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Last Week’s Frugal Accomplishments

The garden yesterday evening right after sunset

I cut some of the first daffodils from the garden. With limited cuttings, they will still give me many in the garden, both this year and in years to come. They smell so wonderful!

I harvested rosemary, parsley, thyme, green onions, and Swiss chard from the garden.

We celebrated Wren’s 5th birthday this week. She is wearing the shirt that my mom gave her for her birthday as well as the necklace that her sisters made for her (with Fimo clay and a stamp that was then baked in the oven; they also made her one with a “W” on it.) She had a yellow themed party; my parents also brought her some daffodils and some bananas. Elsa remarked that she wanted to have her birthday again so that she could have some “nanas.” Your very own bunch of bananas is a great birthday gift!

We already had yellow ranuncuclus on the table, and I added a few daffodils from the garden. Winter hung some yellow streamers that we had, and there was plenty of yellow.

I gave her a yellow headband, some modeling clay, and a puzzle from the dollar store.

Because it was her 5th birthday, we took her to the library. I have been teaching her to write her name. In our family, when a child turns 5, she gets to go to the library to get her own library card. It’s a special date with mom.

Winter took this photo of Ivory sleeping in my arms. I love her super long eyelashes!

I went to a rummage sale on Saturday. I took my updated garage sale list with me. I purchased two blouses for my 6-year-old (.75 for both) that looked brand-new. I also found several paperback books for the children for .25 each. I also found some fabric that I can use for pajamas for Christmas for a couple of girls, a piece of embroidered fabric from which I can make 2-3 skirts for the girls (for $1), a beautiful serving spoon that is silverplate with a mother-of pearl handle (I polished it when I came home).

I watched a few shows on Hulu for free.

I received a free copy of Martha Stewart Living in the mail.

Oranges were .32 a pound at Winco, so I bought an entire box (28 pounds).

I used a $20 off $60 coupon for the local nursery to get some needed items for the grass and the garden. I decided to add 2 more blueberry bushes to the garden (Biloxi blueberries, which need almost no chilling hours and are already in flower!). The blueberry bushes were on sale.

I transplanted lettuce thinnings to other spots in the garden.

“I looked out the window and what did I see. . ..”



Apricot blossoms during sunset yesterday evening

I made Balsamic orange vinaigrette, French bread, hair detangler, and a batch of laundry soap.

What did you do to save money this week?

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25 Comments

  1. Lisa, could you not return the hatchet on which the handle broke on the first use? That sounds like the epitome of “defective” to me – I would think they would have taken it back, instead of your having to buy another.

  2. We visit with our son in Georgia, & his family, over Skype, too. The grandbaby knows who we are, because we are the Grandma & Grandpa from the computer! She knows the “ring” means Grandma & Grandpa are “visiting” & runs to the computer. It is a great, free way to stay in touch.

  3. This past week we did several frugal things.We received a bill from the hospital where I had a biopsy done last month. They offered a 10% percent discount if paid in full by phone. We shuffled and juggled and were able to pay it, saving quite a bit. However, we recieved another bill from radiology this week for several hundred more (after insurance) that is in addition. So, we had hoped to pay it all off this month, but it’s not going to happen.My husband was able to find himself a pair of size 14 Nikes that were in excellent condition for only $4.50 at the local Kiwanas thrift store.My daughter combined her birthday with a friend. She and 2 friends spent the night here Friday. My husband barbequed chicken and I made salad and veggies, plus homemade cupcakes with a recipe for both the cake and the frosting that she likes a lot. The friends brought the ice cream. The next day, they went to the movies and out to lunch, treating each other. I love it when they get older and have a bit of money of their own:)Worked on an Easter dress for a little friend out of leftover fabric from my daughter’s formal dress I made last month. I had to buy a zipper and some trim, that’s all.I got my daughter a pair of tennis shoes on clearance. She hasn’t had a new pair for a VERY long time, so it was overdue.I cooked numerous meals from the pantry/freezer/home-canned food cupboard.We got our pork back from the processer. It looks extremely lean, which makes my husband very happy after all his hard work raising it. Everyone who bought one has paid him. Although he doesn’t try to make a ton of money off of our friends, this time he was able to pay for ours, pay for cut and wrap for ours, plus he was able to make some toward the medical bills.Went to the dentist. None of us had new cavaties. My husband had one filled that he has been putting off for a couple of years. Planned menus with a friend. We are helping them move 8 hours away from here in a couple of weeks. We are going to feed everyone who is going, mainly out of our freezers and pantries for the 4 days. I’ve already made a soup from chicken I boiled, etc., today and will freeze to take with us. We will pull our 5th wheel, so will have a place to stay AFTER we unload it from all the boxes we are loading it with from her move. We will take my mother-in-law so she can visit her brother who lives near there.Gave my daughter a free piano lesson, as usual. Got several movies from the library.

  4. I try to never throw anything away either! Makes for interesting combinations and flavors sometimes. “Waste not, want not” as I always heard my other say.

  5. When I was in junior high I was so happy to get my older high school cousins hand-me-downs…I felt so stylish.My youngest daughter when she was in 7th grade would come down every morning with her coat on already, and eat breakfast in her coat. When we got back from school she raced back upstairs. This went on most of the year until the high school sisters found out that she was raiding the closet and wearing clothes that were not hers! The highschoolers left earlier and came back later giving her time to pull off her daily ruse. A lock was put on the closet door. This turned out to be only a temporary fix as when summer came and they were off to camp counselor jobs she discovered how to remove the hinges.

  6. I love your pictures of your children and the garden. Is your yard completely walled in? Is that a common practice in Las Vegas? It reminds me of THE SECRET GARDEN.We had snow again today (Tues) and last week Thursday and Friday. Then rain!! on Saturday and Sunday. Rain amidst the snow has turned the farm fields to lakes. Fortunately our house is on the hill of the property.Some of the family was up Saturday as one son and daughter ran in a race, in the rain. We were there to cheer them on then went home for a big hot lunch. Everyone was so cold and wet. Soup and grilled cheese…when I make grilled cheese for a group put 4 on the George Foreman, 4 onto the griddle and another 4-8 in the oven as open face toasted. That way no one has to wait.Did no shopping, couldn’t, as we got a notice of fraud on our VISA card. Some one was at a Walmart in another state trying to charge $700+. So we cancelled the card and are waiting for new ones to be sent. They stopped all the charges that were not ours. Didn’t need anything urgently, just husband was supposed to leave today on business and had to put off a day to tomorrow until cards arrive.Had one meal out on Friday, fish fry with another couple. We do this about every other month…fish frys are big around here, all year round, not just for Lent like some do. Otherwise packed lunches, made vegetable stir fry and hot and sour soup, Irish soda bread, rhubarb crisp, pizza, white bread and banana-bran-chocolate chip mini muffins.Picked up some more books at the library, worked on my puzzle books I received at Christmas (I like Cryptograms and Crosstics the best), watched 2 shows on HULU and a couple on the internet. Am now up to Season 4 in GILMORE GIRLS.

  7. Walled gardens are VERY common here; suburban lots are divided up with cinder block walls. They have them in the suburbs in southern California; I grew up with a cinder block walled yard. I remember the first time I went to someone’s house in Utah where the neighbors backyards all ran together (no fences, no walls) and it was very strange to me!

  8. Brandy, in my daughters school they had promised the kids that they would teach them how to plant some seeds, shes 4. But the school hasnt done it tet and she asks me evryday. I was thinking of planting cilantro on a small scale at home in a box. So she could have the fun of it. Will i need potting soil

  9. My husband and I were out on Saturday morning ( our date time) doing some thrift store shopping and one of our stores had potatoes and onions for free. We were given 90 pounds of potatoes and 80 pounds of onions for FREE!! SO excited, we have shared some with friends and my son’s co-workers who are single parents and large families on limited income. I will freeze and can the rest of it. We also were able to purchase green beans for less then$0.80 cents per pound, 2 cantaloupes for a $1 and 16 peppers for $2. We have been eating at home all meals, my husband has been taking his lunch. I cut my son’s hair, we used our tax return to pay of some bills, as well as stock up on meat and other items. We negotiated an ER bill down by 15% by paying in full before the due date. I love reading the posts each week and getting some super ideas.My usual weekly items are also, washing baggies (including my food saver bags) to re-use. We quit buying paper plates, keeping the heat down as much as possible, turing thigs off to save energy, any scraps of food are reused to the best possible or given to the dog to extend his food. Used lots of coupons to get several items for under a $1 or free.

  10. I love reading this post and the comments from the readers as well. Very inspiring. My list of frugal accomplishments include:Buying fabric at various stores to replenish my fabric supply. Costs per yard varied from 50 cents to $1. Will use this to make summer clothes and future gifts.Made 2 St. Patrick Day scarves, a St. Patrick’s Day table runner and napkins.Made an Easter spring scarf out of materials already on hand. Have Easter outfits planned for fabric already purchased.Crocheted one gift for Xmas for nephew.Am in the process of making a crocheted afghan as a wedding present for brother and his new wife out of yarn I have on hand (turning into a huge blanket!).Made pumpkin bread, pumpkin muffins, granola, breakfast muffins, bread, and baked spaghetti for breakfast, lunch, and dinner for freezer. Used ingredients I had on hand.Bought extra strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries on sale from store and put in the freezer.Took kids to $1 movie for a special treat.Walked 6 days in a row outside to help strengthen my back to avoid surgery. Also did daily stretches.Took my lunch to work and packed kids’ school lunches each day.Made dinner at home each night.Made a daily to do list to manage my time better.Paid all bills at the beginning of the month so I knew exactly how much I would have for the remainder of the month.Stayed in grocery budget.Bought 3 skeins of yarn for $1.Planned Easter menu and activities within budget.Set aside funds for spring break activities and menu.Have an “extra” job scheduled for April to generate extra income.Earned Swag bucks and survey income for gift funds.Got some freebies in the mail and coupons for some freebies as well.Well that is all I can think of at the moment. Again, I love this posting.Anna

  11. This week has been a great week but nothing unusual happening…*My husband and I finally were able to submit for our taxes. we have used turbo tax to our satisfaction but often we do “get stuck” even with the info provided by the program.Anyhow we will get a refund and have decided to put a sizable amount for the emergency fund based on looking at our last year’s expenses(we did not take this one into account last year) and also for the house repairs and gardening to which we want to take more seriously this year.The rest will go to our retirement fund and we are also putting extra towards the principal on our mortgage.*We paid off the last of medical expenses from December, so glad to close that chapter off.Expenses in this area went better than expected.*Will have to go to the county library to pick up some more books on organizing. Have finally budgeted for our shoe closet and laundry room to be repainted, organized and redesigned to accommodate our needs.My son has a lot of shoes and my husband’s shoes does not fit a over the door bag or the shoe tower as it run large and really heavy.*started brisk walking three times a week and hope to restart my jogging by summer since the accident in September really affected mobility of my back and strength in arms. *opened the windows and turned of the heater…woohoo…cannot tell you how much that makes me happy that spring is almost here*Spring cleaned the master bedroom.Use a tea-tree oil cleaner(spent $11 a bottle that lasts 6 months) which i dilute for that and use it everywhere.Freshly laundered sheets always inspire me to dust and wash everything…*Made all meals as usual even with the little one sick with a earache and at at home.Had to go to the doctor for him as he was in a lot of pain and resorted to getting antibiotics and OTC painkillers.Good thing probably is I did not go anywhere this week-spares gas(we use cash @ usu. $3.39 here and usu. spend $40-$45 per tank every 1 and a half weeks)*Also something I started just this month. Since most of my family is back in India,UK and Africa. Using Vonage helps with our international calls but my one hour talks w/ folks in Africa cost quite a penny so THANK GOD for skype…Wish I had started that earlier…Have a great week everyone-Sheeba

  12. We loved Skype when our daughter and her husband were missionaries in China. It was so nice to actually see them and where they lived along with talking to them.

  13. We got a plot in the community garden . I am so excited. We planned our garden layout yesterday . This is our second year in a condo they do not like you to have plants on your patio. They fine you like 300 dollarsif a drip pan breaks so we are very happy to be able to plant in a garden.We are going to try to do companion planting. Me and my daughter are pretty new to this so it should be fun. Not a very frugal week we bought tireshowever we got 100 dollar rebate. Spouts had my gluten free bread buy one get one free. I have been trying to bake my own but have not found a good receipe . Does any one out their know of one . There are so manyonline mine have been ok . Even if there is a mix to order on amazon that would be great.Thanks, Patti from San Diego

  14. While I haven’t ever made it, there’s what appears to be a great recipe for gluten-free bread on the One Good Thing By Jillee site. Not sure if it’s okay to post a link, but if you open another window and do a search for the site title I am sure it will come up. The date of that particular post was 3/4/13. The bread certainly looks wonderful.

  15. Pop, it is really easy. You put 2 cups of GF oatmeal to soak with 2 cups of milk overnight in the fridge. In the morning, it will be very thick. Add to it 2 eggs, 2 TBSP brown sugar, 1 tsp baking powder, a pinch of salt, 1/2 tsp nutmeg, 1/2 tsp GF vanilla, 1 tsp cinnamon & 2 TBSP melted butter (or olive oil). Cook on a waffle iron.Optional ingredients are 1/2 cup pumpkin or squash, or 1/2 cup applesauce. Both are great. I have substituted ground cloves for the nutmeg before, & that is good also.

  16. I made bread for the first time! I wish it had risen a little bit more, but it tastes pretty good.Got our tax refund.Got a big bottle of dish washing soap (25 oz) for .60 using a coupon, which is typically what I pay for a 10 oz bottle. Also it’s coconut scented!Listened to some free podcasts.

  17. I’m still struggling with staying under my budget so I posted on my blog about fine tuning my budget by going through receipts and using my price book to find out where I am overspending and to prepare for next month. I always enjoy hearing how you saved money. 🙂

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