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Last Week’s Frugal Accomplishments

I made birthday presents for Ivory using felt, embroidery thread, and stuffing that I had on hand. We enjoyed an alfresco meal outside. Winter made brownies and my parents brought ice cream (The number 2 candle is one we’ve used for each of our children as they have turned 2).

I cut Swiss chard, snow peas, green onions, lettuce, and tarragon from the garden. I pulled a few radishes.

I purchased 14 dozen eggs at .99 a dozen. I was also gifted 5 dozen eggs from a friend of my mom’s (an older woman who buys little things for my mom all the time, including food, because she just likes to do nice things; she has joined us for holidays in the past). That probably seems like a lot to some of you, but we eat 18-20 eggs in a meal if everyone has 2 eggs (20 if my husband and I each have 3), so only 12 2/3 breakfasts if we were to just have fried or scrambled eggs for breakfast (yes, we could go through 20 plus dozen a month, easily!) We dyed 3 dozen hard-boiled eggs for Easter. We dyed them using dye that I purchased on clearance several years ago. In the last 13 years, I have bought Easter egg dye twice. I buy several all at once when they go 75% off to use for several years

I picked mulberries from a neighbor’s tree. I will be picking more this week and making jam with them. The neighbor told me that she never planted the tree–birds must have done it for her. (She told me that I could pick them and that they had just gone to waste last year). I shared lettuce with her twice last week.

I made pancakes, French bread, soup, and  balsamic orange vinaigrette. We had a myriad of salads from the garden.

I cut both boys’ hair. My husband cut my hair.

I received a $10 off $10 coupon from Kohl’s in the mail. I only receive these a few times a year, and the only time I go there is when I get these. I usually keep my purchase as close to $10 as possible to keep my out of pocket cost under $1. This time I spent more, however, spending $10 out of pocket to purchase some summer pajamas for myself (I had this item on my garage sale list but had not found anything). It wasn’t the $1 I was hoping to spend at a garage sale, but my 50 cent garage sale pajamas that I bought a few years were wearing out and it was time for a replacement.

My parents took my husband and I out on Saturday for my birthday (my birthday was Easter Sunday) while Winter babysat. I had a very nice meal. My mom also gave me two bottles of Olive Garden salad dressing as part of my gift.

My husband found the rest of the items he asked me to look for at the community garage sale in one Craig’s List ad. For $60, he got an engine stand, an engine hoist, a creeper, and 5 jack stands.

I received a free copy of Martha Stewart Living magazine in the mail, thanks to a free subscription that I have from Recycle Bank points.

I printed several free printable worksheets for schoolwork.

Elsa wearing the shirt I purchased for her at the community garage sale for $1.

What did you do to save money last week?

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25 Comments

  1. Happy bday wishes to u Brandy and lil Ivory!:D-moved storage items home a couple wks ago. No longer making $110 mo pmts. -sold $250 worth if items in past 2 wks.-received 2.5 dozen eggs from previous barter. Still have 3.5 dozen coming. -bought 99┬ó eggs at target,8. -washed some baggies-cashed in $23 on my savingstar acct. -went home to Va for spring break to surprise my parents w my sis and youngest,16. My sis paid for half the gas so i only spent about $80 to get from Ct to PA( pick up sis) down to Va. My parents sent me back w 6 large mangos and avocados from costco! Pretty exciting for us! Also brought home their can/bottles for deposit. -redeemed deposits for cans/bottles from parents and neighbor..$3.75. -got 2free samples of paint from lowes. -spent a small fortune to get some spring lawn care started..when did grass get so expensive??-we got 3 quotes for our gutters..we ripped them off when we first moved in and have been in need of gutters for 3 yrs! Took the bid for $675 which we are able to pay in cash. -listened to Dave Ramsey on my ipod for free. Keeps me motivated! Went thru his class Financial Peace University about 6 yrs ago and have come back around to it. -moved cable/internet provider saving us $10 per mo. -made a couple of meals using what i had. I bought bok choy for chop suey. Didnt have any celery so i used the bok choy stem as a sub. Used the leaves in a quiche instead of spinach. -my youngest has been “borrowing” her sisters clothes for tennis game day “dress up” ..mine as well even tho she is MUCH smaller than me. She wouldve normally asked me to take her shopping for new clothes so im very proud of this. She did go shoping w my MIL while we were home so she did get a “fix”. Lol. But she did so well. Taking the opportunity to buy just a few things that she needed. Pair of shorts and new bathing suit for summer. -made my goal on swagbucks for the past 3 wks …. Still at it heidi!;)~Adriana

  2. I’ve admired Pandora bracelets in magazine ads for awhile. When one of my SIL’s was here last weekend, it looked like she was wearing two. One of them was Pandora, but she said one was Individuality from Kohl’s.I checked a bunch of Pandora sites online. Boy, did I get an education. The completed gold ones can literally cost several thousand dollars, even some of the silver ones were almost two thousand.I checked the Kohl’s site and at first glance, they were still out of my range for something so unnecessary. Several hundred to buy a bracelet and put some charms on. Then I noticed that they had a hundred dollar silver bracelet for $29, and selected charm sets for $29, plus I had a 20% off coupon. I got the bracelet and two sets of charms for under a hundred dollars instead of three hundred dollars.The clerk explained that you needed to buy the bracelet a size up, as the charms take up room and change the fit. The larger ones were not on sale and started at $160. I took the regular size one anyway. Today I stopped at Michael’s and bought silver findings to extend the bracelet a little for $5, and some more matching murano beads, other beads like one of the real ones from Kohl’s and some charms I liked for only a few dollars. I wound up with a discount/home made bracelet very much like the red and silver one (with hearts) that caught my eye in magazines. It isn’t valuable, or “real” (except for the sterling silver parts), but it pleases me and I can afford it.I am still in a state of shock that people are casually wearing an amount of money on their wrists that would re roof and re carpet out house.What I want to do soon is locate that stretchy cord that young girls make bracelets with, learn how to make a full bracelet the right size so that the cord is invisible when the bracelet is on the wrist, then watch and collect more of the ” grown up” looking beads that look like the Pandora type until I have enough to make a couple of other bracelets I like to match more of my outfits.Truly, some of the Pandora style beads I bought at Michael’s didn’t really look different from the ones sold at Kohl’s for an incredible amount more money.If I’m not careful, though, I’ll end up with a whole new hobby, and my greeting card making is expensive enough.

  3. Etsy has even lower-priced charms than Michael’s. I don’t know what particular charms you are wanting, but I have bought charms and findings from the following Etsy shops:Bohemian FindingsFancy FabI was very happy with both of these shops and their service.I think you can find what you are wanting for less in the supplies listings on Etsy.

  4. Paula, you can use the elastic from the hang tags on any plants you buy to make bracelets. I got the idea from an older post of Brandy’s, & saved all the elastics from my plantings this spring.

  5. Dear Miss Brandy and readers,I have not posted much of late because I am working two jobs till the end of the week. My major accomplishments for the last two weeks are my daughter receiving a scholarship for attending the university, paying off a fairly large debt, and wonderful support from the readers. My daughter continues to improve and stabilize regarding her health. We celebrated my birthday on 4/13 simply and the children made a meal and bought a gift with their own money. We celebrated Easter with simple dinners with food from the pantry and I made Easter baskets from items I stocked up and bought last year on 90% clearance and bunny rabbits I crocheted. The readers here are so supportive and wonderful and I am humbled by the support I have received.Happy Birthday to Miss Brandy and Avery (go look at her beautiful baby picture on “The Prudent Homemaker” website to see how much this lovely child has grown.)Here are my frugal accomplishments for the week:MenuBirthday lunch was vegetables, fruit salad, green mocha drinkChildren got me earrings and can openerMade Easter dinner from pantryEating from pantry till end of monthFinancesWorked 2 part-time jobsStretching funds till end of monthPaid off big debtSaved money in change jarUsed only 1 tank of gas including driving daughter to new jobDaughter got a new job at CVS including a 20% discount :)Graduation costsSister made announcement and party invitationsSister planned and bought party decorationsDress from last year will be used for promFamily member took senior photosUniversity Daughter received a full scholarshipHousing deposit paidHolidayCreated Easter baskets from items bought on clearance 90% last yearCrocheted bunny rabbitsDecorated with decorations already at handMade simple dinners for Easter and Birthday from pantry Children bought me a gift from their own money-can opener (previous one died)SpiritualityReceived numerous supportive comments from readers about daughters–I am humbles and grateful to know the world is full of such kind and gracious peoplePlanted a garden–plants coming upHappy Spring to all and continue to spread your good thoughts and prayers to others.Anna

  6. Thank you very much. My “online” shopping is limited to places that actually have an address and a phone number. I browse online, then send a check and a mail order. I don’t use credit cards on line, actually almost don’t use them at all. (Collector’s Choice Music, Daedalus Books and Paper Wishes are very good about mail orders.)I am looking for murano glass beads and others I can only describe as the ones I like on the Pandora style bracelets. I think of them as “adult” beads, as opposed to the ones that children have tons of. I need to check the Oriental Trading catalog, too. Before I ever dreamed I would be interested in beading, I noticed some interesting ones in there.

  7. I haven’t looked at beads at Hobby Lobby yet–I’m always in the paper crafting corner–but I’m anxious to see what they have. I always save their coupon and Michael’s in case I unexpectedly go there. With Michael’s, you can print out a coupon nearly any time you want one.

  8. Depending on your taste, an Italian charm bracelet can make a wonderful bracelet that is personalized. Mine has the names and birthdates of my 8 children and some other charms that were gifted to me by my children. It is a precious keepsake that I can wear daily because it didn’t cost an arm and a leg.

  9. Paula, I get paid survey money via paypal, and I save that up to use to purchase on Etsy. I’m not a fan of “children’s style” beads myself; the charms that I have given to my children (Eiffel Tower, Big Ben) are ones that I would wear myself (and, in fact, do). I saw an almost identical Eiffel tower necklace on a women’s site for $40; mine cost under $2 to make. Etsy sellers make a lot of adult jewelry, but many sellers of jewelry buy from other Etsy suppliers. Michael’s has a great selection, too, as does Joann’s. I forgot that you don’t make online purchases.

  10. I hadn’t thought about JoAnn’s, as I don’t sew, except for necessary mending and hemming. I’ll stop by there. I have wandered in there before and found excellent sewing notions for card embellishment.

  11. My daughter always seems to be right about three months “ahead.” She is two days away from turning 6 months old and she is moving into 9 months size clothing. I guess that should be alright, though, if that means it is really 6-9 months!

  12. That would be correct. I wish someone had told me that before having children! It would have been very helpful for buying clothing ahead of time. Fortunately I figured it out about the same age your daughter is now.

  13. I only first heard of it within the last week. You can google and get a picture. They are flat with flat things you ad in the flat spaces. That’s probably clear as mud.

  14. I knew I could count on y’all to give advice! Thanks ladies!! So helpful.I actually finished pulling all the fabric today and will work on listing it next week (I have a friend who wants to buy some first on Tuesday and of course I am happy to give her first glance).KK @ Preppy Pink Crocodile

  15. And Brandy- my most popular gift is actually cut flowers in the summer that I stick in jars. The jars are usually mayo or pasta sauce (that I may or may not…I’ll never tell…sometimes take out of neighbors recycling bins when I walk the dog). I don’t even bother taking the labels off as that’s too fussy to do right. Instead I just tape on a piece of scrapbook paper around the jar and sometimes add a scrap of ribbon to tie a bow too. You’d think I invented flowers with the way friends and family react to this simple little gift. Further proof that in our world of chaos and newer, faster, better gadgets, simple, homemade gifts are still treasured.KK

  16. A note on the eggs- After realizing we could easily go through a dozen just for breakfast (all my men REALLY like scrambled eggs!) I started making “egg biscuits”. Just make a batch of your favorite biscuit dough*, roll and cut fairly large. Stretch into a slight oval shape, and press into greased muffin tins, making sure each completely covers the sides of the tin with some overhang on top. Scramble 1 egg for every 3 biscuits, with your favorite add ins- finely chopped ham, sausage, peppers, onions, tomatoes; if adding cheese, use it sparely, just enough for flavor, but you don’t want the eggs runny. Place 1-2 tsp. of egg mixture into each biscuit, fold the tops together and pinch to seal. Bake at 350 for 15-17 minutes, until golden brown on top. Enjoy straight from the oven, or make ahead and heat in the microwave for 20 seconds. Everyone feels like they had eggs and ham for breakfast, and as the biscuits are filling, it only takes 1 (or less) egg person!* to get the tender, flaky “Grands” style biscuits, roll once, spread dough with margarine/butter flavored shortening, fold in half, spread again, fold again and roll.

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