A friends asked me to take care of her garden while she was out of town, and to harvest from it while she was gone. I brought home a basket and a half of tomatoes, a handful of beans, a few small pickling cucumbers, and some small cabbages. I started a batch of sauerkraut with the cabbage. I canned 2 pints and a quart of sweet pickles with the cucumbers.

Left to right: rosemary, thyme, lavender, marjoram

From our garden, I harvested a few figs, several herbs, 7 pounds of seedless grapes, a few apples, and 10 rather large Armenian cucumbers. The cucumbers weighed almost 5 pounds each!

I canned 5 pints of grapes 6 quarts of grape juice,  and 14 pints of dill pickles.

It was much more humid this week than it has been. It is still quite dry here, of course, but the difference was noticeable when collecting water from the air conditioner; most days last week I collected 6 gallons of water a day from the water that drips out those pipes. I used that water to water our potted fruit trees and plants. I also used water from rinsing garden produce and from the last rinse of large bowls to water the pots. (I put a dishpan in the sink to collect the water under the produce I rinsed).

I called the hotel where we stayed for the wedding to have them remove the extra charges on our bill; they charged us twice for parking, and also for a local phone call, which we did not make. They removed the charges, saving me $42.55. I am very glad that I looked over my bill and called them about it.

I used a $10 off $10 coupon at Staples to purchase 10 graph paper composition books for nothing out of pocket.

I also purchased a few more school supplies on back to school sales at Target and Walmart, and used $3 worth of printable coupons for these as well.

I used the shredder to shred the grocery ads that come in the mail to add to our compost pile. We also added lawn cuttings to the compost.

We went to the library, where the children were able to get free used books for reading books over the summer through their summer reading program. We brought home 21 new to us books!

What did you do last week to save money?

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  1. With school starting in September, I’ve started school clothes shopping. I was able to get a brand new pair of Children’s Place jeans using credit at the consignment store for my son. Boys clothes in his size are especially hard to find in good condition, so I was very excited! Then I went to The Children’s Place and combined their $2.99 clearance with a 25% off coupon to get some shirts at great prices (our consignment stores easily charge $3-$5 for used)! Still need to get a few more pairs of jeans for him, but will wait until the beginning of Sept when I can use the CP Cash I earned with this transaction ($10 off a $20 purchase).I was very excited, I received a gift card (from my mom) for my birthday and was able to go get some very needed items. I love Victoria’s Secret but don’t tend to spend money on myself so it was a great treat. My four year old shared a special stuffy with my for my birthday while my six year old son drew me a picture, my husband gave me a massage. I was thrilled with the gifts from my immediate family as they were all very thoughtful yet cost no money! We did decide to go see Planes Fire & Rescue at the theater for my birthday though (wonderful movie and a great tribute by Disney to our fire fighters)! When we got there I used my reward card and was pleased to see that I had a free ticket on there! I had two gift cards for the theater but wasn’t sure what the balances were, I was excited to find that I had enough to cover the remaining three tickets and still have a small balance left over! Made my night!Sold three more eBay auctions this week and am working on listing some more. Unfortunately garage sales were a total bust this weekend.I have gotten back into the swing of borrowing books from the library which has been wonderful, a definite money-saver for me. I can easily go through a few books a week sometimes (I have trouble sleeping and will lay in bed and read). I was also excited to find that I can borrow the first two seasons of King of Thrones (currently am reading that book series).We did eat out three times already this month, and it’s made me realize that this is getting out of hand again. I’m going to try to make sure that we don’t eat out again for the month of August… Hopefully by posting each week I’ll hold myself more accountable!Thanks again for keeping this series going!

  2. The dairy prices in our area (Ohio) are going up quickly. Butter was $3.69 at Save-a-Lot and $3.89 at Walmart (per pound). I found it for $2.89 lb at Aldi and bought 6 lbs for my freezer before it goes up even more. It was on our local news that grocery prices were expected to rise 15% due to the California drought. If you see a good price, you may want to freeze some.

  3. I have a 2 week list again as summer is going too fast. We traveled 2x so it is nice that gas prices have gone down here, rather than up as usual. 9 of us women went to a double wedding shower and a baby shower last week in the Milwaukee area. 3 of my father’s 7 brothers still live there, plus families. My daughter in law and oldest girl both drive hybrid cars so we got very good mileage and we went in 2 cars. DIL and her mother, myself, my 3 girls, my sister and her daughter and my mother. We stayed with various relatives Fri night. We brought along 5 doz farm eggs and honey and qt ea of gooseberries and blackberries as “hostess gifts” (the 5 younger stayed with cousins and the 4 older of us stayed with one of my uncles and his wife) and most meals were taken care of by the showers. For the wedding shower we were to bring a favorite recipe and items to go with, either ingredients or for ex. cookie sheet etc. The 2 girls are sisters and are marrying 2 brothers…that happened in my family too where 2 of my mother’s brothers married 2 sisters. For the baby shower we each made bibs or burp cloths and one small terry cloth stuffed bear and went in together to buy a larger needed item, a swinging door baby gate. We have not had to water anything this year, so far besides the hanging flower pots. We have probably had a little too much water, but it replenishes the ground supply, so all good. While we were gone to the showers weekend the men all gathered and did work on ditches. They deepened them, rented a “scooper thing” to dig, then smoothed and seeded. They did this in many places around the multi- family property and also repaired a bridge over the creek that broke loose in the June flooding. They did this all Fri night and Sat. I left a fridge full of food…sloppy joe filling and buns, a jello salad, cole slaw, vegetables and dip, cookies, brownies, 2 bags of potato chips. Others brought food too. There was coffee and coffecakes for breakfast Sat. We set up 6 tables in the garage and the garage fridge was filled with pitchers of cold water and iced tea and lemonade. Our place was being used for the main meal site so we set up 5 tables in the garage and chairs etc. It was our bridge that washed out so I am glad it is fixed. I had been driving across,to me, wobbly boards . I am guessing if we’d had to pay someone it could have been in the $1000s and maybe taken weeks.This past Sat we packed up a cooler and drove to the EAA airshow. We met up with friends from college days and found a nice place for viewing the afternoon airshow. We say the USAF Thunderbirds which were pretty amazing. Tickets to actually get in are 47.00 per person, but you can watch the airshow from all around the airport for free. Afterwards we went back to our friends house and since it was still pretty warm and we were hot from sitting in the sun we swam in their above-ground pool. That was very refreshing. Mended a hole in a jacket pocket, replaced missing button with one that almost matches, sewed the elastic band back onto an other wise good pair of undies. Youngest and I sewed our baby presents. She made the stuffed animal. We used all fabric and thread and stuffing on hand.

  4. I’ve always loved Mondays because I get a lot done and caught up on the weekends. I have meals planned and I am ready to go back to work. I think I work harder at home because I have a desk job.

  5. I am so sorry. I lost my father on July 6 to Alzheimer’s and I have 4 sisters so we have been going through some of the same type of stuff. Good luck to all of you.

  6. How exciting! Have I missed the segment already? Or do you have an air date for the future? Our TV seems like it’s practically glued to ABC 3 but I’ll look for this, for sure, if I haven’t already missed it.

  7. I’m glad to hear you like your wonder wash. My daughter wants to get one so she doesn’t have to use the laundry in the apartment which is so expensive and has been ruining her clothes. She wants to do her lighter weight clothes in the wonder wash and then a load of heavier jeans once a week and a load of sheets in the laundry room.

  8. The story that featured my family and how we live a joyful simple life was on 23rd of June this year. The last story was on Monday 4th August. This story is where I helped other families. If you look on A Current Affair’s website you can look in the story archives to view the videos of each story.

  9. I absolutely LOVE my wonder wash! It uses “arm power” which is exercise, and very little water and soap. I would suggest anything that’s stinky or stained get soaked. I just use a bucket with a little soapy water overnight and wash. I also have an old toothbrush I use to actually scrub the stain as needed but usually soaking does the trick. I wash large items, like sheets, in the bathtub and hang outside. I will be purchasing an old fashioned ringer soon to help with the wringing part.

  10. I am so excited I had to share. I never knew the Salvation Army thrift store had HALF price Wednesday. We went there tonight after supper to look for a desk. (Gavin is going into high school, I want to get him a nice desk for his room) Well, what a surprise all clothes were half off AND it was SENIOR day. Another 25% off. I got nice really nice shirts for the boys for 50 cents and some were just 25 cents. I got 2 pairs of jeans NEW still with tags on them for $7.00. Other than shoes now the boys are ready for back to school and for less than $20.00 It pays to be a SENIOR sometimes. YEAH.

  11. Thanks for this “review” of your wonder wash, Mandy. I seem to have more “specialty” clothes than I’d like, and I think it may be my solution to using my conventional machine. Brilliant! (My mom has an old-fashioned ringer because she collects”antiques”, and it’s an old one. The next time I talk to her on the phone, I should tell her to use hers!!! 🙂 lol.) Heidi

  12. I have been reading along for quite a while new but only the other day discovered all the wonderful comments which are worth reading and so encouraging. So for days I have been going back and reading all your comments. It is better than a book!My frugal accomplishments this last week include…. I sold my old car. We changed to a much smaller more economical car and the old one sold on Wednesday. So happy. Yesterday my Mum gave me half a huge celery, I chopped it and it gave me enough for a chicken pie and the leaves for two batches of chicken soup. I popped them into the freezer and will make these over the next two weeks. (it is winter here). My husband just finished making over our kitchen, he did everything himself. I am framing my daughters wedding photos. I found an old window that is very rustic and I am using that to make a display. I have greatly reduced our power bill by using the slow cooker mostly instead of the oven. I have lots of herbs growing and as soon as it is spring I add basil and a few more. I am making my Christmas present and am working on cotton washcloths right now that are really pretty, I love them. They are kind of addictive to make! I make the miracle cleaner and my own cleaning products. I save water from the sink and my husband has rigged up a pump so if I use the bath the water goes out to the garden. Today I can ring up the insurance company and get back some money from cancelling the car insurance. Thank you all for such good ideas and wonderful happy attitudes. Many days I know I can save at home much more than I could ever earn outside the home. Have a wonderful weekend. Annabel.http://thebluebirdsarenesting.blogspot.com.au/

  13. I made dill pickles this past week also. 🙂 My cucumbers have not been growing well but I was blessed with a paper bag full from a friend. I have made lots of sweet cucumber relish (Kerr book recipe), bread and butter pickles, and dill pickles. My family and I will eat most of the items that I have canned but I have also reserved dill pickles for my father-in-law as part of his Christmas gift. It feels great to already have a head start on Christmas! I was also able to finally squeeze in a little sewing. I made a dress for my cousin who turned five recently. Okay so her birthday was in April and I just finished it but better late than never right? 🙂 The rest of my accomplishments are here: http://www.lifeasmrsemerson.blogspot.com/2014/08/frugal-things-i-did-last-two-weeks.html There is also a picture of the dress I made. Hope everyone has a great frugal weekend!

  14. I had to look up tax free weekend…We do jot have them here 🙁 Seems like a great idea. For the first time ever I received in the mail the $10 Kohl’ s coupon frequently mentioned.

  15. Dear Judi , I’m sorry for your loss and the difficult times. Will you be able to keep the house in the family, possibly the younger generation move in? I wish you all the best in your retirements.

  16. Anna – thanks for your kind words!Cindy – I am sorry that you are going through the same experience. We all have this in life. I will remember you during this time.Athanasa – thank you for your kind words! My Mother had it in a reverse mortgage. It is way under water. It will save us from having to clean it out of 68 years of goods though.

  17. Jan, they are fearsome planes for sure, as they are fighter jets in real life. I would not want to come across one in the air. The sound they make, the roar, vibrates in your chest and you can feel it. They swoop in so fast it’s as if they appear out of nowhere.

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