Dahlias in the Sewing Room The Prudent Homemaker

I took a free online photography posing class.

I studied French using free online sources.

I spoke to friends in France by a free video call.

I harvested a small amount of Swiss chard, a small number of cherry tomatoes, rosemary, and a bay leaf from the garden.

I used my solar oven to cook most days.

I used shower warm-up water to water potted plants in the garden.

I sewed two new Christmas stockings using drop cloth I had on hand (and took photos for an upcoming tutorial!).

I mended a pillow cover.

I started sewing Christmas gifts for my children using fabric I had on hand.

I found out how to fix something myself. 

I said yes to some hand-me-down t-shirts, which fit two of my girls (both of whom were wanting some new shirts).

I purchased some schoolbooks for my eldest’s college classes used on Amazon.

My eldest downloaded some free piano music from musescore.

I made some adjustments to my shopping plans for the month to take advantage of some deals. I dropped my plans to buy pork and chicken this month (the store was out of chicken, so I got a raincheck, which I hope to make work next month instead). Instead, I bought a good deal of  pasta on sale (thank you to everyone who said it was $0.49 a pound, even though it wasn’t in the ad) and even used a coupon to make the price better on some of it. I bought a 42-ounce bag of M&M’s for Christmas stockings (from my grocery budget) for $4.99 at Albertson’s (I downloaded the Just 4 U app to get a digital coupon for this deal). I bought 10 pounds of sour cream at $1 a pound (a rock bottom price, and I can use it as part of a creamy sauce on pasta as well as on rice and beans). I also picked up the Friday freebie, which was a free seasoned rice (I chose a bag of Spanish rice, so that I can use it with beans).

I combined my shopping trips. None of the stores are further than 2 miles, but I did three stores at once so that I only had to travel that way once.

I opened the house and enjoyed the fresh, cool air!


What did you do to save money this past week?


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  1. Hand-me-downs are such a blessing!

    This week I helped a lady clean her home, which cost me only gas to her home and back. They were moving the next day.
    My husband took healthy and delicious homemade lunches with him to work every day.
    We got some great deals on organic salad and grapefruit.
    Lastly, I am making bread in my bread machine right now to take to church. My husband said it’s better than Ezekiel bread!

  2. I learned that when I drain chickpeas or cook chickpeas that if I save the liquid (called aquafaba) I can use that in a tonne of recipes. the most useful was to make meringue cookies. to think that I had been pouring this liquid down the drain for years. there are entire cookbooks dedicated to this “waste” ingredient and I will be taking advantage of it from now on.

  3. Brandy once again I have shared your site with a person that is struggling to put food on the table and keep a roof over their head. So another big thanks for sharing your wisdom and allow others to do so also.
    I got Free rice blend, free drink, free cheese plus spent a bit over $50 to get the 200 bonus fuel points at Krogers. I gathered items to make the next Christmas presents. AND then I got a crisis phone call from our one daughter that she needed to move within 48 hrs and need a place for her 3 teenage sons in their school area (which is NOT where we are) ,herself and 2 dogs. We got permission to take the 2 dogs even though our lease only allows 2 total. Rascal is not used to sharing since our dog Kira died last spring. PLUS dogs are used to being fenced in and we have no fences…going to have to spend a lot of time training them and finish housebreaking the just about 5 month old pup. Oldest is 6 and laid back boxer. Prying him up to walk the perimeter might be a challenge with him weighing 90 lbs.
    The rest is here http://chefowings.blogspot.com/2017/11/starting-of-nov-groceries-also.html
    Blessed Be…

  4. Hello Brandy and everyone from Australia 🙂 . How wonderful Brandy you got some fabulous deals on pasta a sour cream.

    Our frugal accomplishments are as follows –

    Financial –
    – We banked some more money into our saving for our home with cash bank account.
    – Worked on redoing our budget to allow for price rises on groceries, utilities and our pay rises.
    – Had a family counsel about ways to reduce costs and save more money for our home.
    – Worked out with the price rises on buying whole beasts from the butcher that it will be cheaper to buy meat when we see it on specials and stock up then.

    Purchases –
    – Purchased 4 whole chickens on special for $3.69kg saving $6.02 on usual prices and also purchased 4.45kg of beef mince on special for $7kg saving $22.22 over buying it in the local butcher.
    – Bought 15kg of Valencia oranges on special saving $5.05 on usual prices.
    – Purchased 6 bottles of sarsaparilla on special saving $4.50 on usual prices. We take a bottle with us when we have date days out on long trips.

    In the kitchen –
    – Juiced some of the oranges we purchased making 6lts of orange juice for advanced stocks.
    – Cooked all meals and bread from scratch.

    In the garden –
    – Used composted grass and leaves to mulch parts of the vegetable gardens rather than buying hay.
    – Didn’t turn on the drip irrigation system on the day saving 83lts of water because we fertilised the gardens with a Seaweed solution instead using the rain water from the tanks.
    – Trench composted all vegetable scraps into the gardens to amend the soil.

  5. Hello all! Last week was a mixed week frugal wise.
    The week started with one car not starting…. realizing we thought we had no way of getting into the car with only remotes. I had the car towed (thank goodness for roadside assistance – so no charge for towing! Dead battery and started process of getting key. Next day, my husband had some trouble I was able to drive it about 5 miles to dealer and get more information and pay to get a key. Now have a code … Friday while on errands we stop for key … have to redo paperwork…. but find out it will be free so more paperwork to get $ back….
    Halloween was a disappointment … in our previous home – we never had trick or treaters since most houses in area are far from road. 13 years later we are in a new neighborhood with less property still no trick or treaters. Most of our candy went to my husbands work.
    Grocery shopping was very good. I only made one trip to Frys for 40 butter at 1.99 each most for holiday baking. Same trip 10 different pastas for .49 each. I was excited! Lol! I wanted more pasta but it was very slim choices. Other frugal things
    — made 2 pecan pies for my husbands birthday
    — date night last night local high school football game – fun! Used to go all the time – this was the 1st time this year
    — My husband wants a new tool from Lowes so I got 2 Lowes cards during Frys weekend sale for extra gas points. I also earned a gift card, so he will receive that also. My mom is sending another card to go with it.
    — using dishwasher and washer at full loads
    — ate bean burritos a few nights
    — combined errands out two days. Stayed home other days.
    —. I have been riding stationary bike some days for exercise and I continue to walk dogs on days my husband works.
    That was my week. Have a great frugal week all!

  6. This last week was a whirlwind. By the time I worked, added Halloween activities, did lots of homeschool, and visited my friend for a day, the time just flew. In the midst, we managed to do some money-saving things.

    I cooked soup twice, and we ate soup way more than twice! It was fast during a busy week to just grab a bowl of it and warm it up in the microwave. I did a little shopping. Most of what I bought were items that were free or very inexpensive that I am saving for Christmas stockings, and a few clearance clothing items my daughter needed. I was able to find some really good deals on groceries that I got–such as cookies for $1, broth for 50c, 1/2 gallons of milk for $1, etc.

    I am trying to do something every day or two to prepare for Thanksgiving, which I’m hosting this year, since I am super busy between now and then. It will make the day easier and more relaxing.

    I put the rest, plus pictures, on my blog: https://wordpress.com/post/beckyathome.wordpress.com/12065

  7. I bought chicken thighs at 49 cents a lb. I made beans and rice,for tacos every night after work. I added spices, tomatoes and carrots. I went to visit my elderly relative in a nursing home, who is, one way, two hours away, but I only stopped for gas. I made it home without eating out and ate at home. We are in the low 80’s, so it is nice to not have heat nor air on at the moment. I dyed my hair with $3.00 dye. I cleaned my tile kitchen and bathroom floors, again, with bleach. I listened to the radio for entertainment, just like they used to do back in the 1930’s…..lol.

  8. Frugal Accomplishments at our house:

    Our coffee maker was no longer working so we had to buy a new one. Target had them on sale for $10 off plus I was able to get an extra 5% off using my card.

    I was able to find some clearance items on sale at Walmart for Christmas gifts for our granddaughters.

    One of our local Aldi stores had a grand opening and I was given two $5 off coupons two weeks in a row: by the cashier the first time and another customer the second time. That was a welcome blessing!

    I bought onions at Aldi for 69 cents for a 3-pound bag (I bought 2). Lately, I have been taking two onions and carmelizing them. They bring new life to rice and bean dishes, eggs, and even salads.

    For the last month my husband and I have been doing some updating in our home. We painted our living room/dining room area and got new carpeting. Not very frugal but we have been needing to do some sprucing up for a long time. A couple of ways we saved money was that our brother-in-law installed the carpeting for us for only the price of a hamburger at our favortie restaurant and we also received rebates from Menard’s on the carpet pad. I found a wall clock for $12 and the rest of the wall hangings were what we already had just used differently. We are so happy with our “new” rooms.

    We picked the last of the tomatoes from the garden, let them ripen, and made spaghetti sauce.

    We are working on freeing up space in our freezer for a couple of turkeys this month so this week my husband took out a large hambone from our Easter dinner and made a pot of ham broth. He also got some good ham pieces from it. We will use it for soups and other dishes.

  9. We had a potluck at work and my contribution was made from several things I already had on hand. I also was able to take home several leftovers. I redeemed points for two Amazon gift cards from Swagbucks; I will use these for groceries for a party I am hosting the weekend before Thanksgiving. My parents came over yesterday and spent the day with us. They brought us enough batteries to change our smoke detectors. They also brought us dinner and a bottle of wine!

  10. I love that you were able to start on your Christmas presents — as always, the flowers are beautiful.

    For the past several years I have been using a planner to help me stay organized. I used to buy them, but for the past three years, I have made my own, using pages I print from online and a three-ring binder. If you Google “Free printable planner pages” you can find several sites I used pages from three different sites to customize for my needs, with week-at-a-glance, month-at-a-glance, menu-planning, shopping list, and other pages. This year I also printed out Bible verses for each page, which will keep me inspired. I was tempted to buy a planner in the store last week – but the $35 price reminded me that making my own was a much better choice.

    I cashed in some PineCone Research points for $35 in Amazon certificates and used them to buy a Lodge cast iron dutch oven, paying $3 out of pocket. I had one before and used it all the time, until I made the mistake of making popcorn in it and the high heat cracked the porcelain. The new one is purple and looks great. I’ll keep the old one for making popcorn. I used a $10 off $10 coupon from JC Penny to order a pair of fleece-lined leggings. I wear these under my ski pants and the pair I had was quite worn. I still had to pay some, but was glad of the $10 savings.

    I bought 9 pounds of butter for $1.99 a pound.
    I made homemade bread, French bread, pizza dough, cookies, and hot cocoa mix. I also made a large batch of kolaches (Czech pastries) to take to a church function. My mother’s best friend was Czech and the recipe is from her – making it reminds me of my mom and her friend making big batches of them in the kitchen at home.
    I mended a blanket and a shirt and made some quilted coasters from scrap fabric. I also made some hand warmers for my husband’s stocking, using scrap fabric and rice.
    I cleaned and sanitized all my hanging baskets and flower pots. I waited until my husband was sanitizing all his brewing equipment and, instead of dumping the sanitizing solution in the yard, had him fill a wash bucket – I then used the still-clean solution on my flower pots. It saved water and made the sanitizing solution do double duty.

  11. We had several warm days so I was able to turn off the furnace and use passive solar heat to warm up the house. Our kids’ sports seasons are all over so we aren’t having to grab fast food meals as we live too far from town to run home between School and sporting events.

    This is my favorite time of year; grocery store sales! I purchased a year’s supply of pasta, plus enough for the Cub Scout Blue and Gold banquet which I chair for our Pack. I got enough Gatorade for my daughter’s basketball season, and have purchased a year’s supply of butter. Then I went to Sprouts and took advantage of their sale on pistachios. I had wanted some to eat at home and some to put into smaller bags for our Christmas baskets but they didn’t have more in the store. I took a rain check instead which is good for 30 days.

    My daughter needed new basketball shoes, so we drove to the outlet store. I had a price in my head of what I thought they would be. The store was having a huge sale plus if you were a rewards member, or signed up that day, you received another 30% off. For the amount I thought we would spend for one pair of shoes, my daughter got shoes, shorts and several pair of socks and they actually had a size 15 court shoe on sale for my husband as he is coaching our son’s team this winter. The season doesn’t start until the first of the year so they will be a Christmas present for him.

  12. Ooh! That’s a good sale on pasta! I hope we get some similar deals nearby soon- my pasta stores are depleted and the lowest price I can find nearby is 75c per lb.

    Here are our frugal accomplishments for the week:

    * Prepped meals for last week were a hit- the lasagna, veggie fried rice, and burgers we had were delicious and lasted until yesterday, and I used the last of the sauce from the lasagna and some french bread to make french bread pizzas yesterday. This week’s meals include: chicken tacos, bbq chicken, and chicken noodle (or rice) soup (all made using a single chicken that I will be cooking in the slow cooker today). I’ll also be throwing together “Cowboy Caviar” ala Budget Bytes (https://www.budgetbytes.com/2016/07/cowboy-caviar/) to go with the chicken tacos, since I have everything except the cilantro on hand (and I was going to leave it out anyway!) I am going to use canned diced tomatoes instead of fresh, though.

    * I defrosted our second (small) freezer and took inventory of what all was in our freezers. Turns out, we have a ton of food still, which is such a good feeling! I’ll be adding some diced bell peppers and onions to the space I cleared out yesterday, as I bought both on sale last week at Aldi.

    * I took two of the 3 lb bags of onions (each bought for 69c!), sliced them up, and cooked them in my Instant Pot (using the slow cooker & saute functions) until they were lovely and caramelized. I’m going to dice up and freeze at least one more bag, and I may dehydrate one or two. I’d prefer to freeze them, as I can just throw them into dishes without having to make sure they rehydrate properly, though I’m not sure I’ll have enough freezer space for more than the one bag.

    * I redeemed rewards from Cross Media Panel for two Walmart gift card, which I will take with me to Sam’s Club. I’ll be able to get $35 off my order, which is great for my budget 😀

    I think that’s everything for us this week! Hope you all had a good week, and don’t forget that DST ended today, so check your clocks!

  13. I took advantage of a loss leader price on apples and canned 5 pints of applesauce. I also canned 7 pints of ham and bean soup. Then, knowing the celery would shrivel and die in my fridge because I rarely use it, I chopped it up and dehydrated it. I found chicken thighs on sale and bought a BUNCH of chicken meat. Hung clothes to dry on indoor rack. Drove back and forth to my job without air conditioning. Had several opportunities to open the house and air it out.

  14. I also bought Halloween candy on clearance for Christmas! I got big bags of m & m’s and skittles for $.99!! I also shopped sales for apron fabric for my girls for Christmas, and made 3 coordinating crocheted washcloths. I am making most of my stocking stuffers this year. I did NOT go out to eat! Haha For me, that’s a frugal accomplishment!

  15. This has been a good week! I canned up another 7 quarts of tomatoes from my produce mark down box of 20-25 pound flat of beefsteak tomatoes for $3! We are totally stocked up with tomatoes for the year now to use as-is or to make salsa or sweet and sour sauce or BBQ sauce or whatever I need! Leaving them as tomato chunks/dices gives me the flexibility to use them in any of those ways! I still keep the other sauces or my shelves continually but now have the extra canned tomatoes to replenish those sauces as needed! Does that make sense?

    I used up the last of my 30 pounds of bananas- froze several whole one in a ziploc bag. Made banana coconut delight cookies and more chocolate banana applesauce cake!

    Got another 42 eggs from my chickens this week- they have given less than the 49 eggs a week due to the colder dreary weather but we are still ecstatic at this chicken venture of ours!

    Got paid for the memory quilt I made and my client loved it so much she paid me double my price that I gave her! Plus she has several more for me to do after Christmas!
    Just started marking a baby quilt for a friend who is due in 6 weeks. I made the quilt top from scraps from a free online pattern that I wanted to try out. The batting was the trimming from the memory quiIt I just finished and the backing is the remnant of a vintage sheet I used to back yet another quilt! To me, that is the most fun savings- when I can take the “trimmings” from one project and use them to make another complete project!!

    I used leftover Texas bread that I got for free and turned it into stuffed French toast for dinner one night this week ! It was a definite “repeater” according to my family! I used some bread that was getting stale to make a ham, egg and cheese strata that was also a dinner for us! I used some of my homemade stuffing mix in a recipe with chicken and broccoli for dinner too! The broccoli had been frozen and from my garden and I used the thick stems of the broccoli by putting them into the food processor to dice them up into small bits that were wonderful in the chicken and broccoli stuffing dinner without needing the more desirable broccoli flowerets!
    All lunches at home and to work were leftovers or make ahead from my food storage! The same with breakfasts! We continue to love having a hard boiled egg with breakfast and as a snack. With our chickens producing so well, I love hard boiling a dozen at a time in my instant pot for 2 minutes and then keeping them in a label container in the fridge! I find if I have things all ready to grab and go that we make better food choices than just having the ingredients on hand! Guess we are just lazy!! I do love spending an hour or two prepping foods to can or put in freezer meals or in fridge that will give us convenience for a whole week or more!!

    It was exciting to have 2 friends- one, my age, who has kept an incredible food storage for decades, and the other, the daughter of a dear friend, ask me to teach them about my “convenience” canning- sauces, condiments, meals that are ready to open and eat! They have added them into their food storage now and tried the sample jars that I gave them to taste test with their families,before canning their own, and they were huge successes! For all that I continue to learn online from so many, it seems only appropriate to share those things with others!
    I put our potatoes that we got for 10 cents/pound into the storage. https://pin.it/XcXlnS2 And no, we didn’t keep our onions in the same unit. They are just there for the photo. They are actually in a separate unit on the other side of the basement!
    Paid off more medical bills. Added to savings. Really have been blessed!

    Hope everyone else is seeing blessings in their lives as well!

  16. That’s an awesome price on chicken! We never see it that low! And, I think you’re awesome, too, for visiting an elder who’s so far away!

  17. 1. Bought a bag of half off Halloween candy to give out to kids at school on Fridays.
    2. Used leftover cooked sausage from sausage and noodles dinner to make a roasted sausage veggie dinner.
    3. Daughter has always wanted Essie nail polish, we found some reduced to 75% off and bought a Christmas red and a pretty festive bronze color for $2.49, nice to be able to treat her to a color. Daughter is now too old for trick-or-treating so I also treated her to a half a bag of dove candy bars.
    4. Started cleaning out the garage sale leftovers and took 11 boxes of books, DVDs, VHS movies, and CDs to the library used bookstore and donated. Felt so good and we literally filled up the car and trunk!
    5. Now to gather the rest of the garage sale stuff to take to the thrift store as a donation for charity. Need to get the garage cleaned out to store our Car in During the winter to save on scraping ice/snow and car wear and tear due to exposures to the elements of winter.
    6. Planned all our Saturday errands to be done all at once to save on mileage.
    7. Booked a last-minute dog walk and four cat pet sits for the weekend, this is good since Election Day and Thanksgiving holiday I don’t get paid for the days we are off from school.
    8. Found some super cute half off fall decorations and bought a set of salt and pepper shakers – one shaped as a turkey and one as an acorn to give as a Thanksgiving hostess gift only cost me two dollars total. 🙂 I have to confess I also bought myself a set to and already have them on the table.;-)
    9. Got paid on Friday and made a point of paying all upcoming bills ahead of time online so I won’t be tempted to spend. Also saved on the postage of mailing the payments by doing it online.
    10. Made stuffed pepper soup using orange and yellow peppers that we’re going bad in the fridge. The colors gave it a festive fall feel.
    11. Last but not least updated my EveryDollar budget and brought all expenditures and income current.

  18. We stopped by Kroger yesterday to pick up a Redbox movie (.27 after the promo code) so I picked up 10 more boxes of pasta for .49 each. One box is brown pasta (wheat or whole grain) that I will be using for Asian noodle dishes. The brown color allows me to use less soy sauce and still have the expected color.

    Publix had their kidney beans on sale for .50 this week. I will be stopping by there (to return the movie) today and will pick up at least six more cans today.

  19. Hi, Brandy! Another beautiful arrangement! And, great sale on pasta! I was thinking our .77 was a good deal. (I didn’t buy any.)
    For frugal accomplishments;
    I baked brownies, squash and rice together since the oven was on. I’m not normally very good at this. Progress….
    We can pay our gas bill, internet and water bill at the bank, saving stamps and stops. I take advantage of this every month.
    I emptied the water barrel for the season. I saved two large containers of it for soap making. Thanks to Laurie for that inspiration!
    I continue to save the brownie mix bags to use as waxed paper. Some days, I feel like i’m going to be found under a towering mound of it! “Whatever happened to Debbie?” “Oh, she was found buried under brownie bags.” Eeschhh..
    I sold a few things on eBay. I’ve sold the same pair of boots twice, now. Some day, I hope someone will actually pay for them!
    I cooked meatloaf for my husband’s dinner and made three extras for the freezer. I used a wonky tomato to top them and us up.
    I reordered a few gift subscriptions for Christmas gifts. This year, Food is my focus for the adult gifts. Everyone needs to eat. I bought and ordered, through our co-op, some food items for each family. I’m focusing on non-gmo and ‘real’ food. Which is also the name of the book I ordered for each family. I hope they read it! ha!
    I went ahead and ordered an indoor clothes drying rack. I have yet to try it out, though. I used ebay money, so no money out of pocket, or budget.
    I cut open the sunscreen container to get another two weeks use out of it.
    I finally picked up the half pig we ordered. I requested the fat, as well. I spent two days rendering that to use in soapmaking. (In the crockpot) The cracklins were put in the refrigerator for the dog. She gets about a tablespoon a day. At this rate, it’s going to take her months to eat it all.
    I needed a large container for my herbal oils. After thinking about it, I realized I could use a small storage tote I had in the basement. I didn’t have to run to the store which is what I was thinking of doing. I cleaned under the kitchen sink and that’s where they reside, now. So happy about it all!
    Finally, we signed up for the ACA again this year. It’s not the best coverage but i’m not sure there is anything that’s ‘great’ anymore. We didn’t have many Dr. visits last year so we didn’t even get close to our deductible. This year, we decided to take the plan with no monthly payment. (Low income) The difference between what we paid and what our new deductible is are about the same. We may as well keep the money since we end up paying the full price of a Dr. visit anyway.
    Have a fabulous week ahead!

  20. It’s a great feeling when you can figure out how to fix something yourself. I made a cup cozy out of a thrifted wool sweater, for an outdoor event I was attending. The frost we thought we were getting this week, which didn’t happen, had us harvesting all the tender vegetables in the garden, including tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, lettuce, basil and lima beans. Still no frost, though it looks and feels more like fall. I’m happy to be joining in here: https://abelabodycare.blogspot.com/2017/11/elder-in-training-frugal-accomplishments.html

  21. A friend of mine who has lost lots of weight swears by that aquafaba!! I need to try some of the recipes too!

  22. What a busy week here in NC! Love that everyone saved on chocolate for upcoming holidays. Here’s what I saved on last week:
    Halloween- My work had Trick or Treat during the day and of course my DS is too old to go out at night, he was invited to come walk around and get treats from everyone who we have know for all his life. He was on Cloud 9 seeing and talking to everyone. We came home with a lot of treats. We haven’t had anyone come out to our house to Trick or Treat for about 14 years since we live outside town limits in a rural area. (Those who came were family and friends who have since grown up and moved away.) My MIL bought 2 giant bags of candy in hopes that she would have some…alas, we have them now. They are on the kitchen bar counter in a big bowl and when older relatives come by to see us, they have been taking a couple of pieces. Sales: I found Wonder Woman swords on an after Halloween sale bin for $3.00 each. Now these toys run in the upper $20’s- I bought 2- one for me (Who knows when I might need it- LOL!) and one to put in the bin at work for the toy drive. Also found my favorite candy bars on sale which I had a coupon from newspaper and also a store coupon on app. Price came to 99 cents each so I bought 2 bags. Found pumpkin ice cream on sale for $1.29 a gallon- bought 2. We stayed in that night and watched scary movies. I made Robbers steak bites from a London Broil I bought when they were on sale BOGO.
    Grocery list- Drove 10 miles to take advantage of a double coupon up to $2 at a certain store. I got 3 GoodnessKnows snack bars, 2 meat and cheese snack pkgs, 8 oz of ricotta cheese, 2 cans of spaghettios, 4 pkg of prepared cookie dough for FREE! Went to another store to use up $5 reward and got free milk and eggs. On another note, I have been doing research on coupons to use on sales for the holidays. I have to make a Friendsgiving lunch at Reality in a couple of weeks for about 45-55 people. Of course they will pay me back but I want to save them as much money as I can so the monies can go to other uses for the center. Plus adding to my own stock pile.
    Holiday Outlook- As I said I have been doing research on sales/coupons for the upcoming holidays. At the beginning of this year I pledged that I was going to try and make it with only paying as little as I can. I have been adding points and using the refund apps to add to my budget to get things with free gift certificates or coupons for free things. I have been cleaning out and putting things on sale and will reuse a lot of it for gift giving. I am feeling pretty good about it!! This week I am researching recipes.
    Hubby’s Savings- He was a champ this past week!! Fixed one car that had a part go out, manually changed the oil on the other and fixed my washer again. (The same thing keeps happening to it and it’s not worth to get a new one yet!) He took lunch all but one day. I cooked out of the pantry and freezer this week and tried new recipes on him plus we got leftovers from Reality Center on Thursday.
    The leaves are changing at a rapid rate and are so pretty this time of year so I hope you stop at take in the wonder of them!

  23. Brandy,
    How do you store 10lbs of sour cream? Does it just get eaten quickly in your house or do you have to do something special to preserve it.

  24. We had a bit of a busy week, but still managed to do some frugal things – including the things that caused our “busyness”, since they were all free classes and field trips! 😀 We also had a self-imposed power outage day (okay, a MOM-imposed day haha); it went fairly well and while I spotted some deficiencies in our efforts toward becoming more prepared, I’m sure having everything turned off saved us some power for the day. And as I typed all of this up, my son and husband are taking apart a project (a corn toss game) and remaking it into a new project (a trebuchet designed by my son).


  25. We can easily use a whole tub at a meal, depending on what I am making. If it’s a cream sauce, I’ll often use a pound and a half. If it’s burritos, we’ll use 3/4 of a container. It lasts a long time in the refrigerator as long as you haven’t opened it (well past the expiration date by over a month). Some people store it upside down, but I’ve never done that and never had a problem. Just keep your fridge cold!

  26. What beautiful flowers! I’m thankful God put beauty in His creation!

    This week I used laundry and dish rinse water to water plants.

    We used spinach and basil from the garden, although my basil is really tiny right now.

    My kids used calendar pictures to make birthday cards.

    I wrote a note to my birthday friend and gave her snacks for an up coming trip and put it in the last used gift bag I had left.

    We got Box Car Children set on eBook for just $3.99!!

    I have yogurt and hard boiled eggs being made right now and made peanut butter balls ( pb, powdered milk, honey and/or sugar) yesterday for snacks.

  27. *I used my pine cone $ combined with the last of a Home Depot gift card to buy some Lodgestones to extend the blackberry bed. While I was helping with the baby, I still took pine cone surveys, so when I got back, I had a few small checks to cash. For now, the wall around the blackberry bed is two rows higher, since that is the best place to store them. I arranged to borrow a manual post driver from my daugher the next time she is over, to add an additional t-post to the bed. At my age, using even a 5-pound sledge hammer to drive the post is harder on the shoulder joints than using the driver.

    *Spent the week catching up on the outdoor things that were ignored while I was helping our daughter with the baby. Put the garden to bed. Raked the leaves out from under the fruit trees along the back perimeter, then crunched & bagged them. Mowed the lawn, probably for the last time this year, & in the process shredded more leaves & mixed them in the grass clippings. That went on the garden as a mulch cover, with the bags of leaves on top to keep it in place in the wind until the coming rain gets it wet enough to stay put. When I stopped to empty the bag, the mower decided to die (at least the timing was good -I was done!) DH thinks it is the starter.

    *Used the water from the rain barrel that needs emptied before outdoor temps freeze to water the fruit trees & give them a good fall drink.

    *Began pruning out the gooseberry bushes. I am not willing to continue to battle the stinging insects who want to build nests there, & I can use either red or white currants for everything I use the gooseberries to do. Pruned out a couple more nests deep in the first bush.

    *Stocked up with the pre-Thanksgiving sales, & added more cash to the stash at home. I gave some canisters of hot cocoa that was near to end-of-date to our oldest daughter, where it will get used quickly, because her children drink it every morning with their oatmeal fro breakfast. Hot cocoa was a good price on sale at one of the stores, & that is our favorite way to store powdered milk, so I restocked with use-by dates that are 3 years out from that sale.

    *Finished up the last of the holiday gift shopping, using a free gift code from Shutterfly. I don’t like to shop in crowds, & I particularly dislike it during the holiday season, so I am glad to move into the wrapping phase. In the past two weeks, I have been able to spend time with all of my daughters, & we shared multiple aspects of being prepared with each other, including sharing seeds. They have also sent things to each other thru Mom’s Trading Post.

    *One of our daughters serves in the library at church & a few of the “loaner” scriptures that the children check out are literally falling apart. Since they are in a small branch, there is no budget to replace them, so I suggested to her that we look at the two Deseret Industries stores that are near me & the ones near her sisters, & see if we can find inexpensive replacements. Yesterday I found a black leather-bound Bible for $3. The only thing wrong with it was that one of the 2 ribbons for marking your place was frayed, so I trimmed it off at the binding. Over a few months, I think we can replace at least the volumes that are coming apart, for not a lot. That may be the next destination for my pine cone funds for a while.

  28. I love your flower arrangement! The flower with the blush pink is my favourite.

    My week was pretty quiet again:
    – I made a super-easy 3-ingredient cranberry sauce! (http://approachingfood.com/better-than-store-bought-cranberry-sauce/) I didn’t bother to strain out the skins and just used my immersion blender; more fibre is always good for my IBS and it’s so much easier just to blend it all! I will eat cranberry sauce on bread like jam, or simply as a side, although my family prefers to eat it with the traditional turkey.
    – I received a shampoo and conditioner sample in the mail. I love freebies!
    – I usually only do scratch cooking, but recently have had to buy some food due to illness, however, I tried to be mindful about it. I bought a sub when there was a two for one 6-inch sub deal, so that lasted me two meals, and bought pizza but only when there was a two for one slice deal, so that covered both the DH and I for dinner. I also used a survey code from the back of a receipt to get a free cookie. I’m looking forward to when I’ll be able to get back to my scratch cooking! Cooking for me is a form of creativity and I really enjoy it.
    – I was able to make a pasta salad today, which I will serve over bagged salad for the next few days. The bagged salad was on sale for 99 cents a bag. I made the pasta salad using a box of pasta that I had traded for previously, and I added in veggies and herbs from my balcony garden (baby tomatoes – including some green ones, as I expect a frost soon, baby swiss chard, lettuce micro-greens, mint, basil, baby carrots, and parsley), and added in some leftover red cabbage from a trade several weeks ago (it was still good; only a little wilted, and the dressing will perk that up). I used a dressing mix from my pantry (bought on sale, for times like this when I only have minimal energy to cook) and some oil and vinegar. I usually serve pasta salad over a green salad, so that the pasta dressing becomes a salad dressing as well. The combination of the bagged salad and the pasta salad that I made probably cost me less than $3 total, and will feed the DH and I for at least 3 meals (6 generous servings).
    – My MIL downloaded whatsapp to her mobile phone, and now we can video call for free to South America! It was nice for us to be able to see her, and nice for her to be able to see her son and his wife. Also saves us on long-distance calls (she’s ill so we call her daily), even though my DH had been using super-cheap phone cards.
    – My work gave us a free pizza lunch one day, so that saved me the cost of a lunch. This was particularly nice, as I would have had to buy my lunch that day.
    – Using money earned from doing Pinecone Research surveys, I ordered a number of items online: a 10-pack of animal finger puppets that I will give to a child for Christmas, a package of 100 disposable piping bags, and a fake greenery garland that I will use when wrapping Christmas presents. It’s on a literal slow-boat from China, so it will only arrive just before Christmas, but including shipping, it only cost me $18 and change. I already have a set of the finger puppets in my gift stash and know that they’re good quality if not nicely packed. If the new ones don’t arrive in time, I will give the child the ones I currently have, but repackage them.

    And that was my week! Looking forward to learning from everyone, as always!

  29. Darcy,

    Way to go! I happen to think that keeping one’s home up is very frugal in the long run. Maybe not this week, but you will reap the benefits later and avoid problems with the care you are giving your home. I love seeing well-kept homes. 🙂

  30. I went to Shoppers Drug Mart the day after Halloween and picked up some final Christmas gift items (but they were considered “Halloween”) steeply discounted. I was able to get candy, some candles, some beautiful handsoap, dress up costumes, all reduced by 70% or more. They were fall scents like Pumpkin, Cinnamon, etc. but things that are easily still used during the Christmas season.

    I also went to Chapters after seeing a beautiful linen bag online that was on clearance for $3.00. I used their inventory finder to find a store near me, went there and picked up several of the bags which I will fill for gifts for nieces and nephews (although not for Christmas – that is all done and wrapped). I also picked up a puzzle for the final piece of my nephew’s gift – it was on sale and then an additional 25% off due to a promotion that was running over the weekend.

    I made lots of soup this week. I used Jul’s tip of adding a bit of water to thing it out and make the soup last for one extra meal (this was more out of laziness and me not wanting to cook up another meal than needing to make it last for one more meal). I made cornbread, muffins, cookies, black beans. Here is a quick and EASY bean recipe for anyone interested:
    2 cups of dried black beans (cleaned and rinsed)
    3 cups of Salsa (canned, store bought, whatever you wish)
    3 cups of broth (I use chicken but you could use vegetable)
    Dump it all in the Crock Pot, give it a stir and leave it on low for 8 hours.
    Dump in some frozen corn (amount to your liking), leave for 15-20 minutes and serve.
    This recipe is from Ricardo. I love it and serve it as a thick soup, or with rice, or in burritos, or over cornbread. Easy, cheap, healthy, and good.

    I posted my October recap (a little late due to the freezer mishap) here:

    Have a wonderful week everyone!

  31. I love everyone’s frugalness! What a great week I’ve had. I was getting a bit concerned about only having 2 Christmas presents, I can now report that I have a ton! Yesterday I went to the local thrift shop to look for light bulbs as I have been moving one from lamp to lamp as needed and am not going near the stores that sell them less expensively for quite some time. Although they didn’t have what I needed at a reasonable price, I found many Christmas presents for family with most costing less than 50 cents and the most expensive costing 2.00. Such a blessing! I also was looking for something in the garage and found light bulbs that had fallen down! And they were not broken – Yippee! I also found a bag of candy that I can use for Christmas stockings forgotten in a food container.

    I am so thankful to be able to be sorting through food in tubs that we have had in the garage for a couple months and am finding that the mice have not gotten to them. We have an out-of-control rodent problem this year and catch some most every day in the traps (warm winter last year?). I am sorting the food into able-to-be-frozen but needs to be protected from the mice, and not-able-to-be frozen and will need to be stored in our loft storage area of the cabin as soon as my DH finishes insulating. We were given an old, but in great shape, “ugly” carpet that he will be able to use as flooring for the storage area. So blessed!

    We have lots of room in our new-to-us fridge so I’m using it for storage for the extra ketchup and mayonnaise.

    We have hot water again and I’ve been cleaning like a fiend. My husband went to his parents to paint some rooms for them for a couple days. We sent the laundry and trash (they have a dumpster) saving us about 24.00 as we still only have the dryer hooked up. My MIL asked what we needed food wise from the health food store and Sam’s club. She is so generous!

    DH has installed the wood stove that was given to us and stove piping that was also a gift (they are used and 2 separate people gave us them, but they work together) and we are able to heat our cabin for free. Wood we have lots of.

    Our friend gave us some old rigid insulation that my DH is making work in our cabin. He said he will have to buy more, but this helps. It has been sitting in storage for years, but doesn’t smell and is still usable. DH is also able to scavenge wood from the barn for use as he needs.

    I have found enough larger sized clothing now to get me through the work week as I continue downsizing. I just cannot believe that I let myself gain a couple sizes. I know it’s been tough recently, but this just makes life that much more difficult.

    Have a blessed week friends!

  32. I want to see how much below the USDA Thrifty Food Costs we can go while improving our diet with more fruits, vegetables, and plenty of protein. So far this week, we have spent $16 at Dollar Tree (including goodies to help keep my mom above 100#) and $27 at Kroger. We will be buying potatoes, onions, carrots, and a family pack of ground beef at our local supermarket today to take advantage of sale prices and 8-12 eggs somewhere. We got free coffee, spice cake mix, rice mix, and potato soup mix on our last trip to Kroger. Score!

    I think mom is on board now with converting our high cost, old-fashioned house phone service to one that will be $15-$20/month and still let us have five(!) handsets. We will only lose the one on the kitchen wall. I’ll hang something over the phone outlet for aesthetics. But since I am in the middle of moving my cell phone from one carrier to another (Finally I have an Android phone!), we’ll wait just a bit to make sure that the two carriers work out their differences. (What do you mean, Carrier B, that Carrier A says they can’t find my account? I just paid them $20 to keep my service for another 45 days for the sole purpose of keeping my number so it could be transferred.)

    I want to get mom an Android phone for emergency use only outside the house and as a mini-tablet while home connected to our wireless network. *** Any suggestions on free or nearly free service? *** She’ll only use the phone as a phone a few times per year but we both feel better knowing she has a working phone in her purse.

    Tornadoes in November?!? We’ve heard thunder yesterday and today but it looks now that the nastiest stuff will stay south of us. It looks scary between St. Louis and Toledo. I hope nobody gets hurt.

    We stayed away from temptation (Goodwill’s half-off EVERYTHING sale yesterday) as our major cost-saving last week. We also settled for a $5 pizza in the park instead of a sit-down dinner in a Mexican restaurant which “saved” us at least $15 when we got hungry while running errands.

    Mom and I have major differences on how warm the house should be. I’d be happy at 68 max. (I melt at 75 and would be fine at night at 55-it’d get that cool in my apartment occasionally in San Diego and I’d sleep like a baby with a knit hat and socks on.) Since British/Irish standards agree with 68 as a minimum for old folks’ homes, I tried convincing her that she, of mostly Scottish/Manx descent, would be fine at that temperature once she got used to it. No. There was no getting used to it. So this year, we’ll try 70 at night and 72 during the day for the furnace. She is often still chilly at 72 so we have put a small space heater on a footstool aimed at her armchair. She is now in charge of the temperature in her immediate area. She turns it on occasionally with its thermostat set at 75. I think the fact that she is the one in control is the most important thing contributing to her comfort.

  33. I fixed my son’s tennis shoes. His shoes always pull away at the toe, while they’re still otherwise new looking! I’ve tried gluing them before, but I finally found an adhesive that would hold.

    I cut my son’s hair. Even the beauty school’s prices are expensive when you multiply it times 3 kids.

    I made doodle bugs out of leftover mashed potatoes, and cheese and onion toasts out of a tiny bit of homemade bread. Husband and I had the toasts for dinner last night, along with some scrambled eggs. Much more frugal than a dinner that centered around a meat.

    I had a bit of cabbage left over from cabbage rolls (those inner leaves just don’t want to roll!), so I made cabbage soup. I also used leftover spaghetti sauce in the soup.

    I found a great deal on split chicken breasts. I bought 15 or so pounds. When I deboned them, I saved the tenders and my husband and I breaded and fried the chicken tenders. I also found half a bag of fries languishing away in the freezer, so we fried those as well. That was a real treat, as good as any restaurant meal I’ve ever had! The chicken breasts went into the freezer, and the bones were saved for chicken stock. I’ll start the stock in the crockpot before bed tonight.

    I saved the cardboard inserts to the boxes our tea bags come in (if you get the 100 ct bags of tea from the Dollar Tree, you probably know what I’m talking about). I’m going to use them to make hand-painted, personalized bookmarks for Christmas stockings. We’re all always in the middle of 3 or more books, so we always need book marks. Brandy, your stocking post inspired me, so my goal is to make as much handmade as I can. I plan on caramel corn, book marks, cracker candy, cinnamon star cookies, a coloring book from pictures printed online, and then each kid always get a box of snack cakes and a toothbrush.

  34. Vicky, I went to your blog. You must live in one of the counties near me. Does Greenfield Village have $5 admission day every year? How did you learn of the special? It was THE place our elementary school would go for field trips. (I also went to college at UM-D and could hear the train whistle from the classrooms. Distracting, but in a good way.) But we haven’t been there for years. I would love to go next year if we could go for $5 each.

  35. I’m glad you are enjoying the Chocolate Banana Applesauce cake recipe, Gardenpat! Also loved reading your meals list. Do you have a link for the stuffed french toast recipe that you could share? Sounds like something my daughter might like!

  36. I stayed with my daughter while I was in the city having surgery. I prepared a large pot roast in the crockpot and a huge pot of chili for all the roommates to share. They are always grateful to have a home cooked meal .
    I received a free set of Christmas cards and address labels from Shutterfly. I paid shipping which was 12.00 and thought that was on the high side since they arrived in an envelope. I believe I have 3 or 4 more $25.00 codes to use . I will be looking for a few more Christmas presents.
    I purchased 50 cans of cream of chicken soup for 39 cents.
    I pried the top off of my deodorant and found another half inch of product.
    I bought Sugar Cookie lunch at Zaxby’s with a free sandwich meal coupon.
    I redeemed 75.00 worth of swagbucks to add to my Amazon account.
    I redeemed recycle bank points for 5.00 coupons that I can use at my favorite store to coupon at.
    I picked up store freebies. Ice cream, yogurt, cream cheese, pancake mix, every drink and rice.
    I redeemed a 99 cent Google code for a free movie and a 5.00 Google coupon towards a book. I got the square container gardening for 5.00 versus the Amazon price of 20.00.
    I bought me a lovely blanket for my bed at the thrift store. I also picked up several storage containers for my kitchen dry goods. I found me a doughnut pan I had been looking for forever. My son needed a black polo shirt for his new job and I found the perfect one. I am proud to say, we got our electrical and water down 50 %.

  37. Trying to live frugally in urban Seattle:

    – Well, our streak of biking and leaving the car in our carport ended this week thanks to mid-30 temps, rain and snow mixed and high winds. I have my limits! I did combine errands and did not drive the car 4 out of 7 days.

    – We haven’t turned the heat on despite the colder temps. Living in a newer rowhouse keeps us well insulated from the cold (but it is hotter in the summer too). We put on sweaters and wool socks and we’ve been fine.

    – I am trying to improve my grocery shopping. I did meal planning in detail before I shopped and also incorporated some great store coupons including a dozen free eggs and a free salad dressing. Next step is to do a better job of tracking what I spend and understanding price points so I know a good deal and am not just attracted to the bright sale signs. Baby steps. No eating out this week (or most every week).

    – Our church congregation (ward) is putting together Thanksgiving baskets for neighbors in need so I found a way to utilize my $.10 bags of marshmallows, as that was on the list. Salad dressing was also on the list so I’ll use my free one since we don’t use salad dressing very often. I also signed up to bring a 10 lb turkey, so I will start looking for sales.

    – I made bread, corn bread, chili (three dinners worth!) chicken stock in my Instant Pot and pumpkin cookies with leftover pumpkin puree.

    – I made an apron from a free pattern I found online and IKEA curtain material that I had left over. I was tired of getting food on my clothes when I cooked. I also sewed more cloth napkins from the remaining fabric as our others are stained and falling apart.

    – I am trying to Christmas shop using all gift cards and homemade gifts. I bought two items for my kids for Christmas with an Amazon gift card.

    – I’ve been reading library books for entertainment all week. I just finished David Sedaris’ new book and my son and I just started reading a sequel ‘The War That I Finally Won’ together. It is such a great book and I’m thankful our library system is so great and gets new titles out so quickly.

  38. When you hard boil the eggs in the instant pot, do you put them in there with water? Or just alone? Then, you said you do it for 2 minutes. Do you let it sit afterwards for a while, or just release the pressure immediately? I’d love to use mine more, and hard-boiled eggs are one thing we eat a lot.

  39. Hi Pattie F it is a expression I use for any extra food or juices we put away that can be used in the future or food storage 😀 . When we find cheap oranges we juice them and put the juice in the freezer in bottles so we have some to use into the future (or in advance) at reasonable prices.

    Our orange juice we buy in the shops here, the ones that aren’t made from reconstituted juice that is, run out at $3.33 a litre and I can make our own 2 litres of fresh squeezed orange juice for $3.99.

    I hope this helps 🙂 .

  40. My daughter’s, granddaughter and I are all doing a pantry challenge. We share meal ideas and frugal tips. It’s fun to have a little competition and some support.
    Meals are coming from freezers and pantry with leftovers closely monitored and if necessary used in another dish. I cooked dry beans, rice, pork roast, french onion soup and many batches of tomato soup this week. The tomato soup is made with ripened green tomatoes from our garden. and stored in the freezer. I also baked bread and stromboli to use up bits of meats and cheese. My daughter and I both own the budget bytes cookbook. Many of her recipes are available online and are very budget friendly

  41. We spent Saturday running “coupon” errands. Bill drove, dropped me off at the front door and I ran inside to do a quick shopping with my coupons. I saved a fortune and did not impulse buy since he was waiting in the car. He went inside at Penney’s were he found a $60 pair of shorts marked down to $4.90. Who in their right mind would pay $60 for a pair of shorts? I found a $50 jacket for my oldest son (who is a 4XLT and hard to fit) on sale for $20 and then applied a $10 coupon. The other big savings was at Kroger where I saved 57%.

    *Today was spent working in the garden digging sweet potatoes, picking peanuts off of the vines and now we are both so sore we can hardly move. This is the monthly garden update.


    *Big, big, big news! I hosted my ladies garden club and it was a smashing success! Thanks to everyone on this blog who offered support when I was nervous. It was so much fun. Why did I panic? Why do I always panic? These are the pictures and the odd meal I served. They handled it very well, I think.


    Jeannie @ GetMeToTheCountry.Blogspot.com

  42. I have had several doctor appointments in the last two weeks (for tests) and have more this week. I have been able to concentrate on meal planning and kept myself from ordering out or eating out too often. Still kept it to once a week as budgeted. I am proud of myself because when I come home late in the afternoon, I really don’t feel like cooking, I feel like sitting down! My stocking up efforts are going well–this week I saved 36% with coupons and sales, and 40% the week before. Plus I am getting items I use regularly stocked up in the cupboards and freezer.

    Also, I went on Saturday to a local Quilt Show and now have so many ideas spinning around in my head that I can hardly find a moment’s peace. I have fabric, I have a machine, I have to sew some gifts! I did not buy anything new but I did enjoy looking at all the quilts and getting ideas for projects of my own. Not that I lacked in unfinished projects, but I think it’s time to think about finishing something. I also counted some finished squares I found in Mom’s house after she passed, and counted 34 finished squares. I need to compare them to the quilt she gave me years ago and see how the dimensions compare–to see if I need strips between the squares or not. I have a quilt top of my own nearly finished as well–I think I only have 8 more squares to go! That would keep me busy for the winter months! I also have Mom’s favorite personal quilt which needs mending for the SECOND time before it can be used again–I did it the first time and I have some pieces cut already. I am sort of appliqueing replacement pieces over the worn ones. Her sister made the quilt and she used it ALL the time. I may put it on the guest bed when finished.

  43. *Last week my son went on a school picnic with his dad. I couldn’t go because I had to work. They took a picnic lunch and instead of packaged chips or cookies I made Organic Non-GMO popcorn. It was a huge hit with everyone.
    *I bought juice on sale. We rarely buy it at all unless it is a good sale price.
    *I used up some Chinese Chives in a recipe.
    *I had to miss a clothing swap but a friend of mine went and found a few things for my son and a snowsuit I’ll use as a gift for another friend.
    *I’ve been able connect with a friend overseas using FaceTime.
    *Several months ago a friend gave me a portable piano. I didn’t know if I’d ever use it but my son has recently showed an interest in music. We have been using it from time to time. Hopefully I’ll start lessons soon.
    *I made pumpernickel bread.
    *My son needed new winter boots. We found them $20 cheaper online.
    *The winter air has become dry so lately I’ve been using the drying rack in my sons room. He’s been having few nosebleeds.
    *I’m attending another clothing swap this weekend. I have a few things on my list that we need. Hopefully I’ll find them for free.

  44. Holly, I have Republic wireless and pay 15.00 for unlimited talk and text. I believe a Trac phone might work for your mother. The phones are inexpensive and they have several calling options where you pay for just the minutes you use. If she will rarely use, you should be able to get a years worth of service for just a few dollars. Family dollar and dollar General sell them here. I would also look on line for one. HSN has special deals on them too.

  45. Isn’t it the best feeling when you learn a new skill and can stop paying someone else to do it?!

    All meals were made at home except for one lunch for which we used a voucher. We skipped dinner that night. One night, I combined random leftovers into a new “creation” which was actually really delicious! Pity I’ll never be able to recreate it. 😀

    We had dinner guests one night and I cooked a meal out of our usual rotation to avoid purchasing additional groceries. I also baked a cake from scratch using free oranges and our homegrown rosemary. Our friends gave me some of their homegrown dried thyme as a hostess gift.

    In a joint effort, my husband and I made yoghurt in the slow cooker. We also joined forces to pressure-clean our driveways and patios.

    I worked an extra shift. My coworker and I car-pooled once. Another day, she kindly picked me up in the morning and I caught the bus home as we finished at different times.

    My husband and I had a wonderful day out participating in a Segway tour. It was my Christmas gift to him last year and it was so much fun! We followed it up with the lunch date mentioned above.

    I cracked and turned the heater on one night for three hours… Unheard of in November!

    Patience is a virtue: I have been trying since March to obtain an appointment for a hospital-based sleep study through the public system. I was about to give up and pay for it out of my own pocket when an appointment became available – in May…! I’m not happy but I’ll take it.

    We took some more scrap metal to the recycling depot and made a whopping $1.90. 😀

  46. Sour cream at $1/lbs! I have sour cream on my list to buy. I was thinking I needed to see if I could get a larger container and save money.

    We continued on our No Spend November at frugalhappyhome.com. We ate meals at home, went to local gardens for entertainment (we have an annual pass–such a great deal) and enjoyed beautiful fall colors. I am inventorying various categories of consumables and posting about how much I have and my goals to use up. We turned off the air for most of the week.

    In general, we were content with what we have.

    I hope you stop by my blog: frugalhappyhome.com

  47. Brandy, I hope this question doesn’t open up a big can of worms, but…why did you sew up 2 new stockings? I’m glad you were finally able to pick up the pasta at the price you were hoping for! I know you have been waiting for that sale for a couple months now. The sour cream, candy, etc. were excellent prices as well. I love that you were able to modify your shopping list to accommodate these unexpected finds. It was good timing that the chicken was sold out, so you were able to delay purchasing until next month with a rain check!

    Quick update on DD. I signed papers for the school to do an assessment to determine why she is doing certain behaviours so they can pinpoint what she is actually needing when she does these behaviours. Once they have this assessment, they will form a plan on how to modify the behaviours so she can learn to communicate the needs instead of the need not being met and she melts down. We have a meeting today (Monday) to meet with a consultant from the Ontario Autism Program who will be working with us at home in connection to the work the school will be doing. But most important, DD had a friend over this weekend which really boosted her morale. This friend is a year younger, so they are currently in different schools. Last year these two girls really bonded (similar interests, both socially awkward). Unfortunately, neither have the supportive friendship at school this year. I think they both needed and enjoyed this weekend’s fun hang-out session. As for us, this week our frugal accomplishments included:
    *Meals made at home included chicken low mein stir fry with veggie spring rolls, breaded chicken patties/burgers with flavoured rice, green/yellow beans and fresh apple pie for dessert, chicken noodle soup (from the pantry) with grilled cheese sandwiches, burritos (made beef and tried black beans for the 1st time, see below), perogie casserole (new recipe, see below) with corn, chicken souvlaki with tzatziki sauce, white rice cooked in poultry stock (wasn’t as tasty as we’d hoped) and carrots.
    *Made a dozen Pumpkin Pecan Muffins with Cinnamon Sugar Crumble Topping (recipe link: http://whatsinthepan.com/2016/11/pumpkin-pecan-muffins/) from pantry ingredients. These are a bit more of a gourmet type muffin, but are still easy to make and so delicious!
    *Tried a couple new recipe ideas this week. First, we tried black bean burritos to see if DD would eat them (she’s refusing to eat ground beef due to texture). Since not all my family was sold on the bean idea (i.e, husband and my mom for different reasons), I also made ground beef taco meat. Surprisingly, I quite liked the bean burrito (and ate the leftovers for 3 more days)! Unfortunately, DD wasn’t totally smitten with it. I’m going to wait and try again in a month or two though, as it might be one of those multiple exposure things. The second new recipe was a perogie cassserole (recipe link: http://www.ourtableforseven.com/2012/08/baked-pierogi-casserole.html) and this one was definitely a keeper! Everybody liked it (even DD’s visiting friend who is also a picky eater), the ingredients are simple and it was so quick and easy to prepare…that is a total win in my book!!! I added it to my Family Favourite Meal list.
    *My mom and I started to tackle the bushel of apples we purchased a couple weeks ago from the orchard roadside stand. We prepped 5 apple pies, froze 4 unbaked and baked one for dessert that night. We opted to use the peeling and cores to start up our new composter, since we already have quite a bit of apple jelly and syrup left over from last year.
    *Brought home a heritage squash from my work after taking DD there for “take your kid to work day”. DD helped take down the halloween decorations (while I volunteered my time helping to pack it into boxes), zipped around the village in one of the golf carts with one of the staff members most of the day, and was treated to candy. Needless to say, she thoroughly enjoyed herself!
    *Did a bigger shop at Costco this week, to stock up on a number of things that were low or almost out. Picked up a few things that were on sale, including a few items I know we will eventually need. Brought home a couple free laundry product samples. Stayed within budget!
    *My favourite local thrift shop had a 50% off sale. I was able to pick up 4 bundles of fabric (including a big bundle of navy blue flannel), some thread that I can use to warp my new loom, a pair of shorts and comfy yoga/stretch pants for me, 5 canning jars, a travel book for Europe (Christmas gift for Hubby) and 3 brand new binders that are perfect for DD to use for school all for just over $15!
    *We set up our composter this week. Veggie/fruit scaps, egg shells, our jack’o’lantern and Guinea pig bedding will eventually become a free, nutrient dense additive for our gardens!
    *Hubby has decided to buy my vehicle new all-weather tires as both my winter tires and regular tires (that came with the vehicle) are worn out. It would cost us a lot more to replace both sets, plus I won’t have to have the tires switched every spring and fall.

    As always, thank you everyone for the continued inspiration I get from this wonderful community. Have a lovely week, everyone!

  48. Hi Holly,
    I was wondering how you get such great rates on your phone service. We seem to be stuck with having a landline in order to keep our internet service. I asked the phone company if we dropped our home landline phone and just kept the internet if it would be any cheaper, but they said it would still cost the same. So we are getting our landline phone service for free by having the internet. Then we each have pay as you go cell phones. Our landline phone/internet is $45 per month.

  49. I forgot to add thanks to the person who said Walmart had the turkeys on sale for 69 cents a lb. I went to Walmart and purchased one. I also purchased my cell phone prepaid car for the month…$25.

  50. Life feels so busy lately and it all seems to go by in a blur! I managed to keep groceries pretty low this week, though all that was saved will be spent on gas in the coming week as we have several things we have to do that are quite a distance away. I was able to get a few boxes of raspberries for $1.29/ 6 oz. They made a wonderful treat with a couple of breakfasts. I am so thankful that we have an Aldi so that we have a source for reasonably priced produce.

    My husband and I decided to cancel the internet at our home. There is very little that we can still cut to save money and we just decided that we will go to the library or a family member’s home weekly to pay bills and catch up things (like this wonderful blog!). The internet company actually made us take a 24 hour period to really think about cutting it because as they said “internet is vital for life”. Oh my, how times have changed only in my relatively short life! We also cut long distance (if we need to make a long distance phone call, we will need to go outside where we have cell phone service) as well as caller ID, call waiting, and voicemail. Our bill will go from $85 to $33 per month. We looked into cheaper cell phone service, too, (we currently have goPhone from AT&T) but can’t find a cheaper one that has any service in our very rural location.

    We also decided to cut our trash pick up for the winter while my husband is laid off. We are allowed to burn our trash here, so we’ll do that while he is home to take care of it at least.

    We found out that our eighth baby is a boy! This gives us 4 boys and 4 girls. But it’s been 5 years since we had our last son and I don’t have anything left from when he was a baby so now we’ll be looking for a few things for this new sweet baby. My brother in law and sister in law will be saving things from their youngest as he outgrows them, but he’s in 18 month things now so we only have to worry about finding things up to that size. Thankfully little ones don’t need much!

    I’m making plans for Christmas gifts and am looking forward to getting started-even if I should have started months ago!

  51. Sarah, I’m sure you’ve already thought about it, but I wonder, since you have cell phone service, why you don’t cut the home phone too?

    I cut call waiting and caller id years ago (each was $5 a month) and it saved me hundreds over the years. Our home phone service raised their rates (raised the taxes) to where our bill with no long distance, no caller id, no call waiting was $25 a month (half being taxes). That’s when I switched to a cell phone earlier this year, as I can get cell phone service for $25 a month.

    I think it’s wonderful that you’ve decided to cut internet while your husband is laid off. It’s definitely possible to do without it and you may find that you are much more productive 😀

    Best of luck to you and your husband while he looks for a new job! Congratulations on your eighth!

  52. Mary, I foresaw trouble with the remote keys and refused to buy a car which had one. Another car we wanted to buy came with only one electronic key. Since we all drive my car, I wanted a second and told the salesman so. He kept repeating, “After you buy the car, you can order another one from the factory.” It was a deal breaker and I walked. Later I checked online and a second key was $250!

    I kept saying to my husband, “I just want a plain old car without the bells and whistles. The more you have, the more will break.”

    I don’t think they make simple, plain cars anymore.

    Jeannie @GetMeToTheCountry

  53. Kim ,

    Most people who have been able to drop the landline have something similar to what we have we have ooma we use as our landline it is opi (over the internet) It prices vary if you own the box or not which we do . Then we pay internet / tv and that is all included and if you drop the tv it is not much cheaper for the internet alone but it is somewhat cheaper. At $45 per month that is very cheap.

  54. Frugal-ish week here.
    Was invited to hand out candy at a friends’ whose husband is away. It was a nice visit and I got to see the children (none ever come to my neighborhood). She provided heavy appetizers and wine as well (she is a wine consultant and is always being given bottles to try).
    The next day a friend’s husband treated me to drinks at the VFW for taking care of his wife while he was away for the hurricane.
    Was asked by a friend to be a recipe tester/victim for a wine tasting dinner on Saturday, so free food and wine. Then attended the wine dinner Saturday.
    I prepaid my chiropractor for November and December. She will give me free adjustments in January (when my cash reserves are low) for the weeks for the prepayment and the weeks I will miss due to the holiday’s and travel.
    I helped out at a reunion event for WW2 submariners at the VFW. Loved getting to serve and hear the stories. I was fed and watered – ok wine’d.
    Saturday I went to the beauty school. I used a groupon purchased months ago for a facial, and got a seriously discounted deep tissue massage due to a student needing some more hours so they could graduate this week. She was amazing. Since I was in the city already, I went to Aldi’s and stocked up on potatoes, onions, carrots and a few other things my pantry needed. Used a coupon for a free sub while I was in town and drank water.
    Yes, I wasn’t home much this week at all.
    My mother and her fiancée arrive this evening for a 2-week visit, so I spent Sunday preparing her room and doing little things around the house that the housekeeper doesn’t, but I know my mother will notice and comment upon). *I know a housekeeper isn’t “frugal” but I work outside the home and need the peace of mind.
    I prepped 2 meals for her visit on Sunday and put one in the crock pot for tonight as I’m not sure of her arrival time.
    The teacher across the hall was doing a breakfast event for his students and gifted me with 2 slabs of ham and some biscuits for lunch today. Another teacher brought in apple cider donuts to share. So I will save most of my lunch for tomorrow.

  55. We have 3 inches of snow and temperatures in the 20’s. But yesterday was a beautiful, sunny day and the roads are clear.

    I am in charge of various aspects of a large community holiday event – including finding volunteers to bake and bring 250 dozen cookies (yes, 3,000 cookies) for the free refreshments. I baked 7 dozen of the 8 dozen I volunteered to bring, using on sale cake mix, eggs, and Butterfingers. (There were a few other ingredients, too). I put the cookies in the freezer in the museum’s kitchen, since the event takes place at the museum.

    DH and I helped a team from my church gather food for one of the food pantries in town. We were assigned streets in an area I would have thought was pretty middle class. Walking up to people’s homes and sometimes being asked in to wait for the donation showed me that I need to appreciate how fortunate I am. Often the people who seemed to have the toughest circumstances were the ones who were generous.

    Meals this week included cheese omelets, pasta y fagioli, New England baked beans, complimentary pizza (one lunch), complimentary turkey sandwich and fruit (one lunch), baked potato soup and tuna pasta casserole. I baked whole wheat biscuits for the first time. (They aren’t as fluffy as those with white flour.) When I organized the freezer I found 1.5 lbs. of forgotten but edible chicken breasts and a loaf of homemade wheat bread among the things I remembered were there.

  56. This week was a bit of a frugal meltdown. I did well on our grocery budget (I spent about $45 for the week for the four of us). But, my two year old son decided that our car needed a “drink” of water and stuck the garden hose in the gas tank of my car! I got to him quickly but unfortunately the damage was done. My husband was not able to fix it using his tricks, so we have to have the car towed and repaired. I plan to stick the receipt and a written account of what he did in his baby book, so we can all chuckle about it later. 🙂

    I recently took a new job that allows me to be home all summer, as well as for two weeks in December. This will allow me to have more time with our children and to supplement their education. Unfortunately, it also came with a hefty pay cut. It will be worth it, but it is certainly an adjustment. Brandy’s site is so encouraging.

    I picked the last bit of living parsley from the garden and made a table arrangement with it. It looks nice for just being a glass of herbs!

    The chickens also free ranged quite a bit this week, saving on feed. We also accepted a hen from one of my husbands coworkers who was looking to re-home it. Apparently it was getting picked on quite a bit in her flock. She seems to be adjusting well to her new home.

    We agreed to care for my mother in laws cat and two dogs while she travels for two weeks out of the month for her new job. The animals come to stay for us and she provides their food. In exchange, she lets us use her cat food for our own barn cat as well, which saves on food!

    My husband broke two of his little toes while playing with our boys this weekend. I taped them and played nurse, so we could save on the doctor visit. He was a bit dramatic about it all, but he will be fine.

    My oldest son (4) has declared that he wants a school bus toy with a door that opens and a moving stop sign for Christmas, so we are hunting for that now! Have a great week everyone!

  57. Hello all! This week has been frugal, but then we had two things that are in need of repair. 1) My husband’s truck. We have no idea what happened. Hopefully his friend can figure it out within the next day or two. Our vehicles are paid for and we are trying to do everything we can not to have a car note. Both of our vehicles are ten years old with over 200,000 miles on them, but we really, really, really do not want a car note right now. 2) We have a hand held shower head and the piece that holds it on the wall broke last night. We are still able to use the shower, but we can’t let the water constantly run because there is no where to hang the shower head while we soap down… so I guess that’s a frugal blessing in disguise lol.

    Now, on to frugal accomplishments!

    1. Had to make a cake and a pie for our church Family Fun Day. I had everything for a pumpkin pie but a pie shell… my homemade shells never turn out right. I prayed about it, flipped through a 1955 cookbook, and found one that seemed simple enough, and tried it. It worked! I didn’t have a disposable pie pan to put it in, but I had made a cheesecake earlier in the week with a graham cracker shell and there was one slice left… so someone ate the slice of cheesecake (ME LOL) and I washed the pie pan and used it. Worked perfectly.

    2. Cooking oil was 3.99 a gallon at our grocer store. I bought two. I currently have five gallons and I bought them all on sale. Yay!

    3. Also bought flour. It was 1.99 for a five pound bag. It’s been that way for several weeks. I have restocked my flour. I have about forty pounds, but I usually buy about fifty or more for the year, so I will be purchasing more.

    4. My pantry if full. Now, I am going to concentrate on stocking my freezer with all of the fabulous meat sales coming up!! I plan to start the year with a full pantry so that I can cut the grocery budget for a few months to pay down a couple of bills that we want to get rid of entirely!

    5. My husband and I have planned to go to Washington DC for our 25th wedding anniversary in July of 2018. Last night, we discussed other, more frugal options, especially if we have to purchase another vehicle. One option is a cruise as everything is included and we only live an hour and a half from New Orleans. I could get a family member to drop us off and pick us up, which would greatly lessen expenses. If we go anywhere else, we will have to rent a vehicle, as neither of us like to fly. (We will, but it is not our preferred method of travel).

    TBH, I almost gave up on stocking up the pantry and doing other frugal things because I felt that I was wasting money, in a sense, but I am learning that although I am stocking up, I am setting a limit on what I will actually use plus a little extra on hand to help those in need. It’s about setting a balance. I don’t want to be a hoarder, but I don’t want to be a spendthrift either. I have family members that are hoarders. They don’t need it, they won’t use it, yet they MUST keep it. I don’t want to be like that. So, I am figuring out how much I will use in a specific period of time, I buy that much, and that’s it. If my stock starts getting low, I start checking sales and I restock, but only to the amount that I actually need.

    Have a great week!

  58. Actually, there is a code to get into the car. Which we can use now. I paid $50 for a key but will be reimbursed the whole amount.
    Definitely a lesson… make sure you have keys when buying a used car and that you get as much information as you can about the car. We do love this car – Ford Fusion Hybrid.

  59. – I enjoyed a date night with my husband, but kept it frugal by hitting up a happy hour, seeing a second run movie and using a free Starbucks coffee credit and having the barista split it into two cups.
    – I did some paid writing, sold something on eBay, worked two days and listed things on Facebook Marketplace.
    – I cooked up a pound of Dollar Tree navy beans in my crock pot for soup that I’ll make for tonight.
    – I took my lunch to work with me both days.
    – I gave all our leftover Halloween candy to a school counselor who keeps it in her office for upset students.
    – I needed jeans, as my one pair didn’t work for me anymore, so I found a pair on eBay in a style/size I knew would fit and paid $13.50 with free shipping.

    And of course, I blogged about everything here: http://thenonconsumeradvocate.com/five-frugal-things-date-night-edition/

  60. We had a pretty good week, frugally speaking. We saved over $35 on our grocery bill and spent $25. We’re having to adjust our diets for new health concerns, so if anyone has any good gluten-free, sugar-free recipes to share, I’d love them! I’ve experimented with alternative flours, etc. but am finding it hard to get excited about baking without flour and sugar.

    Brandy, did you ever get a recipe for the almond paste that was posted last week? I would love to have that recipe, if there was one. I love baking and almond flavored things, even if I can’t eat them right now.

    Here are the rest of our accomplishments for this past week:

  61. Marivene, congratulations on the new grandchild! Boy or girl?

    I am glad you found an economical solution to the library book repair. We do a lot of pre use reinforcement maintenance on books, DVDs, literature and CDs before they are even checked out. Does your daughter’s library do any of that? It really helps the life of materials. If she looks on line she might be able to find book repair techniques. DEMCO is a good source. I am working on a 100+ year old Bible right now brought in by a church member. It slipped and hit the floor and the binding split. Books are very reparable, more than you might imagine.

  62. I second that! Living in the part of Alaska where it hits 20 and 30 or more below zero, all those fancy computer enhanced car devices start freezing up. One time I actually got locked inside my car. The auto locks would not release when the car was off or on. My husband and I were meeting at a restaurant and he was inside wondering where I was. I don’t have a cell phone, so no way to call him. I sat in that freezing car for 45 minutes, until in disgust at my no-show he marched out of the restaurant to see me pounding on the car window! Every winter I wish for my old truck, with everything manual so nothing froze up.

  63. A few highlights for this week:

    Had a potluck lunch at work. I brought in pumpkin pies made from items in my food storage. I did buy whipping cream, but have many ways to use all of it.

    Saturday’s weather was pleasant enough that I was able to wash and line dry all our bed linens. I aired out the comforter and pillows too. It will likely be the last time I can do this until spring. it felt and smelled wonderful crawling into bed on Saturday night!

    My neighbors brought over a half dozen eggs from their chickens.

    I learned to knit this year and recently learned how to do Fair Isle knitting. One of my friends, who is my teacher and a wonderful knitter, let me pull some yarn from her stash of leftovers to make a Fair Isle cowl. I bought two colors of my own, but pulled out nice coordinating yarns to complete the project. they are made from Shetland wool, which is expensive. Each project uses 9-11 colors. Her kindness saved me about $65 or more on the project.

  64. My youngest son does not have internet and is doing just fine. No one believes a 24 year can live with it. They wanted a huge deposit to install it in his apartment and the monthly fee would have been $75. He declined because he is saving to start his own business. On Saturdays, he visits his local library and downloads everything he wants to see or watch then reads it in the evenings during the week. He is able to check email on his computer at work but that is all because it is a highly secured computer.

    He figures it has saved him at least $1,000 this year.

    Jeannie @GetMeToTheCountry.Blogspot.com

  65. Yay for the pasta sale! I thought I was losing my mind thinking I had stocked up on pasta around this time last year! Thankfully my mind didn’t fail me and the sale came around again this year.
    My little frugal list is here if y’all want to pop in!: https://tjssweethome.blogspot.com/2017/11/five-frugal-things-november-2017.html
    Thanks again to all of you that share your ideas, I always manage to pick up a new tip or two. And thanks to Miss Brandy for having this little meeting place.

  66. Kim, I recently saw drop cloths at Walmart when I was there this past week. They were in the home repairs/paint area (“duh” at myself for feeling the need to add that, lol!) at my local store. Unfortunately, I didn’the check the price but I have checked it online in the past so you could probably see the price there and order it too if it is the best deal!

  67. Just a heads up on the rigid insulation – the mice LOVE it and tunnel right thru it and use it as nesting material……:/ I was not happy when I discovered that in our garage.

  68. I get mine at Harbor Freight and then use the 25% off coupon. Make sure to wash it before you make anything with it though – #1 it will shrink and #2 they stink!

  69. Baking with gluten free flours has quite the learning curve and unfortunately, they are expensive so if it doesn’t turn out, it hurts. As for sugar free – can you use fruits in place of some of the sugar? Stevia is very, very sweet and tastes horrible if too much is used. I have tried most of the substitutes and they just don’t bake or taste as good as the real thing – I have not tried Monk Fruit sugar yet – it’s in my cupboard though, I just need to make something for my hubby to try (he’s the diabetic, I’m the one who has to be gluten free)

  70. Massive frugal fail – an entire trash bag of expired food from the pantry. I decided to “reset” it and found stuff that had been shoved way in the back of the upper shelves and since the lighting in there is so poor, the food “got lost”. A new light fixture is on the list but there is no money right now for it but I am watching the free section on Craigslist – hopefully something will come up.
    * I brought LOTS of bread ends, produce scraps and even the deli meat ends from work home to feed my quail. Hopefully one of these days they’ll start laying!
    * We bought 50 pounds of red potatoes for $8 – I made sure I sorted thru them and put all the damaged ones in a separate basket so they’ll get used first. ALL of my potatoes from my garden turned green – and not just on the skin?!
    * Instead of buying a waterbed sheet set on-line (because we wouldn’t find one in town) which would have been rather expensive in the size we need (Cal King), we bought extra wide cotton and I am using an old sheet as a pattern. Hubby only needed a new bottom sheet – we have plenty of top sheets. We have separate beds due to our different comfort needs – his is a Cal King free motion waterbed and mine is a king size sleep number…..they fit side by side in our master bedroom LOL. I share mine with the 2 Danes though – they don’t like his bed.
    * I went thru more of my winter clothes and have an entire basket of long sleeves t-shirts to make narrower. I was planning on “rewarding” myself by a thrift store day of shopping but instead, I’ll just alter the clothes I already have. Not near as much fun, but much more frugal. I even found my winter coats I had gotten too heavy for and they fit again!
    * I am trying very hard to menu plan again and include hubby since he is the one who often does the cooking because #1 I hate cooking, #2 I’m often away working and #3 when I’m home I am also often working on sewing projects o2 home improvement projects he can no longer do. This week we will be having ham with scallop potatoes and green beans, lasagna, meat loaf and mashed potatoes and maybe homemade bread, a soup of some type (we’re not sure what yet, it just needs to use egg noodles since I found 3 bags unopened in the pantry) and sizzler steaks that need to be used (they’ve been in the freezer quite a while)
    * We found a 30 pound box of dog treats on clearance and since the biscuits are so big, they are easy to split into two to make them last longer. We should be good until the new year when I plan to start making them myself
    * We made it to November 1st with our furnace off although we did light the woodstove when the sun went down – it wasn’t by choice….the new furnace wouldn’t come on. A bird had come in the fresh air intake and died which kept the furnace from drafting correctly do it wouldn’t run. I was not happy about that bill! It was just put in last February but no one warned us to keep the vent screened in the summer months :/
    * My Dad found some free cabinets for our main (avacado green!) bathroom + a counter top. They aren’t the correct size but he says we can make it work – since he is a carpenter, I am sure we can. That will leave only the laundry room bathroom to update but luckily, all the fixtures are white in that one!
    I think that’s it. Lots of doc appointments this week again but we are being sure to combine errands and bring snacks!

  71. I had a pretty good frugal week, this site always helps with my motivation.
    -I used coupons at Bath and Body Works to purchase Christmas items
    -A new HEB store opened, after downloading their app I got free granola bars and protein bars
    -Used Sears rewards points to buy kitchen washcloths
    -My best frugal accomplishment was redeeming our credit card points for gift cards to use for Christmas gifts and purchases. I was able to get $250 in Amazon and $100 in Lowes gift cards. I also redeemed my Walmart savings catcher and got $40 which I used towards groceries. Then I redeemed my Ibotta and received a $50 Buffalo Wild Wings gift card. Granted I usually save my credit card points until this time of year and redeem so it takes a bit off of the holiday spending.

  72. Your comments made me chuckle.
    Thank you for volunteering and telling us you got wine’d.

    We had family visit this week, and this housekeeper now wishes she had the week off.

  73. This past week wasn’t frugal. Family visiting with demands made it impossible so. I tried and fought but lost the arguement every time.
    Thankfully, this week we are back to normal. So thankful for that.

    My income fluctuates weekly. I am trying to do the Dave Ramsey’s 10 baby steps. Each week I set attainable saving goals for the week. This past week, I wasn’t able to meet my goal, and I have a few unplanned bills due. I will need to use about half of what I saved. Thankful I had it, but disappointed it is gone. So this week/month and probabally the next few I will live as if I have no income coming in to try and replace what was used. Little excited about this, means I get to be more creative as I navigate back.

    On my way to work, I thought of an idea to make and sell. I came up with a price point. Looking on Etsy, I see the same idea selling for way more than I was thinking, and that store was selling! What I thought of would only require time and tapping into my material stash.

    The dalias are just beautiful! You sure have a decorators eye.

  74. It was a good week with trying to save, use what we have, and make do.
    -Baked a turkey and got 16 meals between the baked bird, left overs, turkey pot pie, and turkey noodle soup.
    -So excited to get a purse that my DS no longer wanted. It’s black and my style.
    -Took down wallpaper in our bathroom, now redoing the dry wall. I’m proud that we did this ourselves, saving bucks.
    -Started sewing a baby quilt-so relaxing and full of purpose.
    -Finished sewing some potholders I am giving as a Christmas gift.
    -Insulated the electrical outlets that face the exterior wall of the house, no longer feel cold air streaming in.
    -Cut and burned brush, who needs a gym when you can enjoy being outside and feel the sunshine on your face, even if it was 35 outside.
    -Made a homemade birthday card, rather than buying one.
    -Brought plants in to keep over winter. I know I will like them in the sunroom next spring.
    -Stay frugal everyone

  75. Brandy those Christmas stockings are stunning!

    I harvested the first meyer lemon and 4 avocados from our yard, plus herbs for cooking. For my birthday, we bought a huge bouganvilla at the nursery which was having a sale on them for 40% off. I placed it in a huge pot alongside our rusty, yucky old shed and the contrast is amazing. The same nursery had paperwhite bulbs on sale recently and I bought 15 of them to use around the house for decor and to give as gits.

    We have not had to use our AC at all for the past couple of weeks and I am hopeful that we are done with using it until next spring/early summer. Yay for cold weather!

    While not inexpensive, our Sprouts has a deal on grass fed beef about once a month for 3.50 off per pound. I always buy 4-6 of the biggest packages during this time and freeze them. This beef tastes amazing and we use it for so many things.

    Tonight i made tomato-basil soup for dinner (we do Meatless Mondays) and I estimated the cost for the pot of soup to be $2! WOOHOO!

  76. Thank you for the advice. I will be aware the next time we buy a new car, which I wish was forever away. Cars are becoming more and more complex which is great when everything works but we always buy used cars and try to run them until the wheels fall off. We end up dealing with the breakdowns. Right now my youngest son has a check engine light that won’t go off. The mechanic said there is nothing wrong but a short and can fix it for $250!!!!! NOT!!! I suggested fixing it with a post-it note over the light.
    Jeannie @ GetMeToTheCountry.Blogspot.com

  77. My late Father, who was a shade tree mechanic, said that about Model T cars. He claimed there was nothing on it that the average person could not fix; however, I would not go that far. I like my key starter as opposed to the crank on the front of the engine, and air conditioning and heating, as opposed to rolling down the windows, oh gosh!, how would I get along without the radio, GPS or mirrors on the sun visors.
    Where is the happy medium?
    Jeannie @ GetMeToTheCountry

  78. -I carefully planned my grocery list and stuck to it.
    -I made all meals at home.
    -I packed each of my kids lunches for school
    -I just enjoyed looking at fun craft stores but didn’t fell pressure or need to buy anything that day.
    -I combined errands.
    -I stayed home for 3 days except to pick kids up at school.
    -I worked on a cross-stitch project and utilized supplies I already had instead of buying the exact color of thread.
    -I used all leftovers and bits and pieces in the fridge.
    -My husband continues to finish projects in our house himself instead of hiring someone.
    -I sat and enjoyed the fall colors outside my window
    -My husband and I inventoried our downstairs freezer and discovered we have enough meat to get us through the winter. I don’t need to buy anything else.
    -Ordered my daughter’s glasses through Ebates and Zenni.
    -Paid all bills online instead of mailing them.
    -Cleaned out flower beds and garden and prepped them for next year
    -We paid off our house and last of credit card debt. We own our cars. We are debt free at the moment and it feels really good. I’m going to live off that nice moment for a while.

  79. Athanasia, it is a grandson.

    One of my younger daughters learned DEMCO book repair techniques volunteering in a library years ago. Her opinion to her oldest sister was that these volumes were beyond functional rescue. They have been thru multiple repairs before, & there is simply no budget $ to replace them.

  80. TYPOS! “no one can believe a 24-year-old can live with[b]out[/b][i][/i] it.”
    Plus he downloads the information onto his [b]computer[/b][i][/i].
    Jeannie @ GetMeToTheCountry

  81. Jennifer, do not feel guilty about the housekeeper. That is the reason we are frugal, so we can have extra money and spend it were we want, not where it is necessary. I hate to turn off the lights and live in the dark. Every light is on in most rooms most of the time. My husband disagreed and wanted them off. I figured the electrical cost, presented him with the figures, and showed him how I could easily save that amount in other areas. He agreed. Being able to see gives me peace of mind.
    Jeannie @ GetMeToTheCountry

  82. Jeannie, my parents switched out all their bulbs to LEDs. Their bill dropped significantly. They have the lights on all the time. I have the same floor plan and live next door to them. I rarely have the lights on. Their drop in electricity was quite significant. It’s an investment up front though. They found places with cheaper bulbs (we have different kinds of light fixtures and haven’t found as good a deal for ours yet) so they could make this happen.

  83. When I am working I also have a bi weekly housekeeper. Because I want to spend Saturday morning with my kids, not cleaning toilets. It is worth it. Don’t feel guilty. We all have our reasons for where we choose to save and spend.

  84. Posting for 2 weeks. We had colds last week and we were down and out for awhile.

    Sewing for Christmas. Got shirts made for the two grandsons and a dress for the youngest granddaughter. Have skirts and jackets yet to sew for the two oldest granddaughters. These are the outfits they wear to Christmas Eve service. They are all made out of the same fabric. I also sew them some clothes as a gift. I sewed the two Wisconsin grandkids fleece vests using Green Bay packer material. Will work on the others this week.

    I had 2 quilt tops that were made (hand stitched) by my great grandmother. Made from feedsack material. I took them into the local quilt shop and had them quilted and the binding put on. They are 70 years old. I now need to whip stitch the binding down. My 2 girls are getting these for Christmas.

    Making a lot of my gifts this year. Having fun doing it and saving money.

    Made all meals at home-meatball stew, crockpot fajitas, hamburgers, pumpkin cranberry muffins, pheasant wild rice soup, tapioca pudding, hash browns, bacon and eggs, cabbage roll soup, sour dough bread, and chili and cornbread. Since there 2 of us each meal stretches to at least 3 meals.

    Cleaned out my sewing closet. The closet in my guest room is where I have a table set up with my serger and sewing machine. I have shelves on both ends of the closet where I store supplies. Sorted through everything. Donated some material and scraps to quilting ladies at church. Used some of my stash for grandkids outfits. Went to JoAnns this week, they had good sales and then I had 25% of total order coupon. Stocked up on some thread, elastic, extra machine bobbins, and patterns.

    Spent the day last Saturday with my youngest daughter. We went to a fall craft show near her. It was nice for her to get away from the kids (hubby watched them). Only bought a couple of small items for Christmas gifts. $20 spent. We had a nice time and I got some ideas for gifts. We took our own popcorn for a snack and our water bottles. No out of pocket for food.

    Only groceries bought this week was milk and bananas. Also found in reduced meat section pork country ribs-4 to a package for $1.70 and 2 ribeye steaks (1# each) for $5.99. That is 4 Meal’s for us. Packaged ribs 2 to a package. We will split a steak when we cook that as well.

    Have a great week everyone!!

  85. Grocery store, originally based in Fenton, Michigan. Now it is part of the Spartan Nash chain of grocery stores.

  86. Tracfone is my new carrier. I do most of my gabbing already on Messenger at home on our home wireless network. I intend to keep cellphone internet usage to a minimum by continuing to do most of my browsing and downloading at home. I bought my phone, a Samsung Galaxy Sky at Walmart which included a $15 30-day card. I am very, very pleased with its screen clarity and brightness. I added a 32gb SIM card so I have plenty of space for books and photos. I will be buying a $125 card (perhaps at a slight discount if I sign up for auto renewal) next month and should be good until December of 2018.

    If my new Tracfone provides good reception at home, we will probably be going with Straight Talk at Home for our phone service. For now, we will be keeping ATT DSL despite the expense. We live in an area where ATT is advertising heavily their new services with special offers, but they don’t provide the advertised services to our house.

    My mom’s ophthalmologist was offering her a low-vision catalog so we might be spending a bit more and going with a phone designed for older people to keep things simple.

  87. Brandy,
    Thank you for another inspirational post!
    I baked up our Halloween pumpkin and got about a cup and a half of pumpkin puree.
    I have been really good in using up every last bit of food-no food waste this last week!
    I have started wrapping some of my Christmas gifts using whatever wrapping paper, ribbon and tags I had left from last year. I had to get a bit creative but so far I haven’t had to purchase anything and the gifts look really nice.
    We enjoyed some of our hard summer labor of cutting wood this week in our new wood stove when the temps dropped and our power went out for 3 hours. Loving the new wood stove as it heats up the house really quickly with a very small amount of wood.
    My husband has a Christmas wreath side business where he makes very fresh, high quality wreaths and I hand-tie each and every bow. I have made half of the bows he will need for this year. I hope to have the other half done by next week. It is work I don’t necessarily enjoy so I do it while I watch a Christmas movie on tv and find that works well for me. This side business brings in enough money to pay our property taxes each year so it is worth the extra effort.
    Looking forward to providing a very enjoyable holiday for my family using as many frugal tips from this blog community as I possibly can.

  88. Hubby has the same thing, he disconnects the battery, waits about 10-15 min and hooks it back up. Stays off for awhile and then comes back on. Our mechanic said it’s just a short but it’s buried in the dash so disconnect the battery.

  89. I didn’t choose the car that I’m currently driving, but have learned all sorts of things in the short time I’ve been driving it. It has a “smart” key…there’s no keyed ignition inside the vehicle just a push button. However, inside my key fob, there is a metal key that can open the driver side door as a normal key would. I keep extra button cell batteries for the fob in my purse at all times just in case. We only have one of the smart keys. In order to get a new one and have the two reprogrammed, it will be $300. The smart key alone is $150. 🙁

    I miss the days of getting copy made at the hardware store!

  90. I have used Tracfone for years. For a smartphone, the cheapest annual plan I know of is $125. For a basic, non-smartphone, the cheapest annual fee is about $80 (by buying four 90 day cards at $19.99 each). The cost of the phone is additional.

  91. Thanks, Laurie! I love using the rainwater; it does seem softer to me.
    The first person who didn’t pay finally did pay. I hope that’s the last I see of that item!
    I love your blog! You write in such a calm manner. I check every week, after Brandy.

  92. Do you mean that your potatoes were already green when you dug them? Potato tubers need to be deeply buried while they are growing, because exposure to light turns them green. If there’s not a thick layer of soil over them, sunlight penetrates the soil and ruins the tubers. Rake extra soil up around the base of your plants a couple of times during the growing season (people call this “hilling” the potatoes).

  93. Allyson, One of my go-to gluten-free recipes is a crepe-like pancake made from chick pea/garbanzo bean flour, water, olive oil, and a few spices called, “socca.” Here’s the link to the recipe I use … https://www.davidlebovitz.com/socca-enfin/ I generally double it.

    The key to socca is a good, hot cast iron skillet under the broiler. I have a 10″ round cast iron griddle that I use. I heat it under the broiler for at least 5 minutes. Pull it out, swirl a teaspoon of oil on the pan. Then pour 3/4 c batter on the griddle. Back into the oven under the broiler for 3 minutes. I slide the pancake onto my cutting board and put the griddle back in the oven for 1 minute before repeating the process. When they’re cool, I put wax paper between them and then keep them in the frig in a plastic bag or I have frozen them. I use them in place of wraps for sandwiches and they are wonderful! This is a wonderful, non-leavened option.
    Good luck!

  94. So interested that your Mum is of Manx descent – I went to boarding school on the Isle of Man for eight years and have such fond memories of the island and the Manx people who have a great dry sense of humour. Has your Mum been to the island? My Mum feels the cold too so when she comes to stay the rest of the family is sweltering.

  95. I do the same thing for my “planner#! I keep a calendar, pantry and freezer inventory list, recipes I’ve collected for homemade cleaners, to do list, holiday section, school section for my son and more. It’s custom made by me for me.

  96. Myra, we traveled by car to Washington, DC a few years ago, all the way from Ontario, Canada. If you are looking for a cheap vacation, Washington, DC is pretty cheap! All of the monuments (including going up the Washington Monument), Arlington Cemetery (we specifically went for November 11 and hear Vice President Joe Biden speak at the service) and almost all of the museums (including all the Smithsonian Museums and the Holocaust Museum) are absolutely free to go through. We even went on a free tour of the Pentagon, but you MUST register for that well in advance as they do security checks on you before they issue the tour ticket (please refer to their website for details). Your biggest expense is the travel cost and the hotel stay. We bought food from a grocery store (can’t take certain foods across the border, but you could take food from home) and took picnic lunches with us each day. Lots of beautiful places to sit outside to enjoy your lunch! Typically we go out for dinner, since it is a vacation. But if costs are a problem, you could probably work around that expense easily. We stayed at a hotel outside Washington because the cost was cheaper, but we did have to pay for parking. I highly recommend going to Washington, DC. It’s really amazing to visit!

  97. Yes, this is what we have I think we are getting it free since we have added service coverage. Plus we have been there several times about this, it helps that my husband is good at business talk so we got it for free.
    I do miss the days of getting copies of keys at the 5 & 10!

  98. Lilli: Do you have to pay on line for Republic Wireless? Where do you purchase the minutes? I buy a Total Wireless phone card from Walmart for $25. IT covers unlimited talk and text, but yours is $10 cheaper! I do not purchase anything over the internet usually…ok never except for emergency plane or train ticket to see my daughter if she is ill.

  99. I do not have internet, and I do not have a smart phone anymore. I just have a $20 Total Wireless flip phone with prepaid unlimited talk and text ($@% a month at Walmart). I use the library, which is next door to where I work. I am typing there now, while on my work break. It does not bother me at all. I find I get a lot more accomplished at home when I get off work. I do not miss it at all. I cannot access internet at work except for business.

  100. Heh that is funny because I will sit in the complete dark (and yes – all LED bulbs) if I am watching tv,and turn lights on and off as I progress through rooms. I plan my cooking each week so I run the oven as little as possible (multiple dishes in there at once). I keep the house at 62 in the winter and 78 in the summer, eat vegetarian 3 days a week, and drive a 15 year old car to keep those budget lines down. But the budget gets massaged so it doesn’t mess with my monthly spa day, chiropractor, or my housekeeper!

  101. For some reason my comment about not having internet disappeared..lol. I do not have internet at the house, just use the library during my breaks (cannot use work computer except for specific govt agency stuff, and it will not access regular sites). I have a $20 flip phone and use a $25 Total Wireless unlimited talk and text prepaid from Walmart for my cell. I do not have a house phone. I find I get more done without the internet at the house either on my phone or by computer.

  102. Mom is a bit Manx thanks to two great-grandparents. I tracked down what town they came and where in New York they married a few weeks after her arrival on this continent. Our biggest cultural connection remaining is, I learned, the Manx Wedding Soup. My mom would always prepare beef barley soup as a very special treat. Her recipe is very similar to the traditional soup.

  103. The last two weeks have been very good for us in many ways, even though we went a little over-budget on groceries.
    The best part for me was that I house-sat for a few days at the end of October. I tend to under-charge people for such services, but this is the third time I have cared for this couple’s home and pets and they totally ignored the amount I asked them for. Instead, they gave me about double the amount, plus additional money for food (with the understanding that any money left was for me to keep). Making a little money on the side is always a good thing!
    I don’t know how many eggs we collected the last full week of October because I wasn’t home, but we sold 4 1/2 dozen that week. Last week, we collected 31 eggs and sold 2 doz.
    We ate leftover meat from our BBQ on 10/22 for almost a week. I made pumpkin cookies from home-grown pumpkin for a harvest party for the kids at church. I made butternut squash soup from home-grown squash for something different in my sister’s and my lunch boxes.
    Harvested tomatoes, tomatillos, a handful of green beans, bell peppers, and chili peppers from the garden. Most of our tomatoes are STILL green. A friend said that everyone on the other side of town had beautiful tomatoes this year, but everyone on THIS side of town had tomatoes that either didn’t set fruit at all or took FOREVER to ripen. We have really weird microclimates here!
    I crocheted a soap holder for my second OCC shoebox. My sister (who is a preschool teacher) went to Goodwill right before Halloween and bought some costumes that can be used for different lessons year-round (a bear mask and a bear costume for when they study hibernation this winter, a Native American costume for November, etc.) and a couple items for the dress-up box. While we were at Goodwill, my mom bought 2 purses that she’d been looking for.
    Saturday, my mom, my sister, and I went shopping. Most of the time we save money mostly by NOT shopping, however there were some things we really needed, my sister had money and gift certificates from her birthday, I had the money I had made house-sitting (which I had specifically set aside for some much-needed clothing items), and we had some coupons that were good right now. We got some really good deals. I had made a list when I went through my clothes a few weeks ago. And I only bought items that were on the list. That’s the BEST way I saved money on that shopping trip.
    I bought 3 packs of 3 panties for $7.89 per pack and a blouse also for $7.89 at JC Penney by combining sales, a coupon, and rewards. My mom and my sister also found some deals there.
    At TJ Maxx, I found a pair of Sketchers Relaxed Fix Memory Foam shoes for $34. That’s a little more than I like to spend, but these are the shoes that I’ll be wearing at work and I need something that I can stand up in for a long time. Also, I have a pair of Sketchers sandals that have been my go-to summer shoes so long I don’t remember when I got them. If these work shoes wear anywhere near as well, they’re a good deal. I had a leftover amount of about $4 on an old TJ Maxx gift certificate, so I saved a little. I still have $60 of my clothing budget left for the remaining items on my list.
    My sister bought a new lined denim jacket at the Boot Barn with a gift certificate and some birthday money.
    At the Dollar Tree, I bought a pair of sunglasses and a brush and comb set for both my OCC shoeboxes. I also bought a pack of paper cups to be used in a craft project in Sunday School this coming weekend.
    My sister and I had been trying to figure out what to give 2 of our best friends (also sisters) for their October birthdays. (Yes, we were late.) We had decided to give some kind of gift basket with home-made goodies in it, but needed baskets. When we were at Tractor Supply, I saw some cute galvanized tubs and, in the Christmas section, a set of 3 homespun-style tea towels. The cost of the tubs and towels was $10 per gift, plus we had a towel left over that we gave to Mom. When we got home, we lined the tubs with the towels. Our mom invited us to dig around in her gift drawer and we found 2 different sets of wood coasters we thought they would like. Those were also added to the tubs along with a quart-size jar of dry mix for Oatmeal Jam Bars (with the recipe taped to the jar) and one jar each of home-made apricot, plum, and fig jams. We gave one sister her gift on Sunday and she seemed to really like it.
    While we were shopping, we stopped at Starbucks for lunch. As a preschool teacher, my sister gets a lot of Starbucks gift cards from her students’ families, so she treated us to a free lunch. We each had a sandwich and a specialty drink and we shared a bag of sweet potato chips. She still has over $30 in gift cards left. (There IS such a thing as a free lunch! LOL)

  104. oops! I forgot to note that we gratefully received a bag of clothing from a church friend. My mom found several things that fit her in the bag and she passed on quite a few nice T-shirts to me. I really needed new work shirts and these are perfect. (Did you know that fire ants will eat your clothes? Well, they will, which is why I needed to replace all my T-shirts and panties – stupid ants!)
    The clothes that we didn’t want/couldn’t wear were added to others we had purged from our wardrobes a few weeks ago and passed on to a lady from our church who works with (I think) abused women. She wants to have a free “yard sale” for the ladies she works with.

  105. We have internet but no cable TV, and my husband and I share one cell phone and one car. We manage very well. Our internet is the SLOWEST (and cheapest) ever and drives my sons crazy when they are here. Ours is rated and 1 and 1/2 to 3 somethings (insert technical jargon here)?? but one son’s work computer is at a high tech government office and is rated at a million somethings?? They moan as they wait for pages to load. I chirp, “Cheap, Cheap, Cheap” as they whine.

  106. Cindy in the South, the internet erased your comment then posted it while you weren’t looking because you said you could live without it. Becareful…”it” is listening.
    Jeannie @ GetMeToTheCountry

  107. Brandy, that is a good idea and we are slowly switching over to LED lights. Very slowly. I have a large supply of regular light bulbs in the pantry so I have only bought LEDs for lights that are hard to reach. Eventually we will have all LEDs so then I won’t feel guilty! I just hate to be in the dark…not because I am afraid or anything. 😀
    Jeannie @ GetMeToTheCountry

  108. Sarah not sure if you would be interested but I have some brand new clothes with tags that I would love to share if you are interested let me know
    I could send to a post office or Fed Ex so you could pick them up

  109. Cindy in the South, Republic wireless is online and their service runs off of Spring or T mobile. I love in rural West Ha and have no problems with the service. I bought my Alcatel online at Amazon and then had to order a Sim card from Republic online. The 15.00.payment is automatically deducted from my checking account. The Trac phone options at Wal-Mart were to expensive. Dollar General had several low cost options as well as Kroger. Looking at the small print they had several companies that offered a pay for when you only use it option. If you only use it once or twice a month it would be quite cheap. QVC or HSN have deals where you buy the trac phone and they give you a special deal where they double, triple and even quadruple your minutes. I have two friends who have done this deal and spend less than a hundred a year for service. My father refuses to give out his credit card number. He has me make his purchases online and reimburses me. If I didn’t explain well enough or you have more questions, just holler.

  110. Cindy in the south. QVC has a smartphone for 55.00 that comes with 1500 minutes. HSN has about the same with 1200 minutes. HSN also has some in the same price range that have the triple minutes bonus. I believe whatever refill cards you buy, they triple the minutes. These are all Tracfone deals. I believe there are coupons available for 20.00 off a deal at HSN.

  111. Nope – these were buried deep and for whatever reason, they are green this year. I have grown potatoes for years and this is something I’ve never seen before and can’t seem to find any answers. I am going to give the ground a break this year and plant a different area – it may be I planted them in the same place too many years in a row (although Grandpa always planted his in the same field year after year using the same potatoes too)

  112. Taking on other dogs that weren’t trained by you is HARD and upsets the household routines. We tried to make it work with by BIL’s Pyrenees this summer but she is very poorly trained with very few house manners (she thinks counters are her personal buffet table), is HORRIBLE about cats and we determined that she did not [i]just[/i] want to chase them…..she behaved the same way with our poultry, she barked[i] constantly[/i] and the final straw was the fight she got into with my female Dane and 12 year old Beagle – luckily, no one needed stitches after that one. We finally just told him that we could not do it anymore and he’d have to kennel her.
    We trained our Danes to ring bells on the doors to the backyard which made potty training soooo much easier with no missed signals once they figured out how to ring the bells.

  113. Marcia R, Quilting is a lot of work, isn’t it? I appliquéd over a quilt I made for my daughter many years ago. It took some doing. I’m out of The habit so I tended to put it off til I couldn’t ignore it any longer. Then, after I was done, I kind of missed it! Ha!

  114. Cheryl, This is the first year we’ve had a CC that gives us cash back. We love it! We’ve used it for gift cards that we gift to someone else, too. I can’t believe it took us so long to do this! I get all giggly when I see the bill and how much we’ll get back.

  115. Kroger has them as part of their big sale this week. 49 cents when you buy ten. I had coupons for 40/4. I had some great fun at Kroger this week. We seem to use this item most often out of the stockpile for various casseroles. I am a hour out of Atlanta Ga? Are you nearby?

  116. If you don’t have long-distance on your landline, does anyone know if you can you still call toll-free numbers? If so, you could use phone cards for long distance if you don’t want to use the minutes on your cell phones.
    Dropping landline leaves kids without a phone, which might not be ideal.

  117. You don’t have to pay a long distance charge when you call a toll-free number, but you will still have to pay for the minutes you use while you talk on your cell phone.

  118. Regretfully Hubby wouldn’t hear the bells ringing..as they ring in his ears all the time. :p Wilbur the boxer has gotten to the point of laying his head on us when he wants out and won’t come when you call if he isn’t done doing his bathroom (potty #1 Business #2). Charlotte, cane corso pit husky …we haven’t figured out yet but she is sleeping through the night with me (and the other 2 …talk about a 3 dog night) without being caged and not making a mess through the night

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