I harvested tarragon, rosemary, and Swiss chard from my garden.

I cut zinnias and rosemary from the garden and am enjoying them on my kitchen table.

I picked narcissus from the garden and I am enjoying them in my sewing room. My narcissus return every year in November in the garden.

I made homemade laundry soap.

I made a few homemade Christmas gifts and worked on some others.

I wore a pair of nylons that had a run in them one more time before I tossed them.

I added water to my homemade hair detangler, shook it up, and called it good.

I mended a baby dress.

I mended a Halloween costume (a .10 garage sale purchase from years ago). All of our costumes were found in the dress-up box this year, except for my oldest daughter’s costume, which was made from an old sheet (she dressed up as the Greek goddess Artemis). I unfortunately didn’t get any pictures this year!

My husband drove the scooter this week. We figured out that he gets 60 miles to the gallon on it. It only holds one gallon, though! We found this out the hard way. Fortunately, my husband had just filled up the gas cans that morning, and he was just a couple of blocks from home. He will be watching his odometer and we will fill up his scooter from the gas cans at home. He expects to cut 2/3 of our gas expenses by using the scooter.

I don’t normally talk about shopping on my list of Frugal Accomplishments, mostly because I feel like shopping does not equal saving. Also, I don’t shop a lot. However, I was able to do some great shopping this week:

I visited a friend’s garage sale and was able to get a few supplies for making Christmas gifts. I also bought a couple of items for repurposing, a few clothing items for the girls (.50 each) and a skirt for myself (for $1). I picked up a book for my mom for $1. I will give that to her for Christmas.

I bought 160 pounds of apples at .58/lb. I plan on making applesauce if the children don’t eat them all first. They might, actually.

I bought 180 pounds of large baking potatoes at .15/lb. This isn’t nearly enough potatoes, as we ate 7 pounds at dinner the night I brought them home, but it’s a start. I’m holding off a little, waiting to see if any stores bring me .10 a pound potatoes, and then I’ll buy lots more.

I bought 27 1/2 pounds of broccoli crowns at .78 a pound. I blanched and froze most of them the day I bought them, and I’ll finish up the rest next week. It’s nice to have just crowns at that price, and I’m not seeing frozen broccoli (which usually includes lots of stems) that low right now, so I decided to do the work myself. The process has been simple, but time consuming with so much broccoli. Of course, blanching lots and lots and LOTS of broccoli means my house smells like broccoli, which is not so pleasant.

I bought 12 miniature white pumpkins on clearance for .25 each to put on the table and on the piano for my fall decorations.

A friend brought by some cookies on Saturday.

I redeemed some free MP3 gift codes on Amazon to get some free songs, thanks to a few readers who sent me some gift codes they weren’t using.

I enjoyed a date night at home with my husband after the children were in bed.

I watched a few shows for free on Hulu. Spy has returned, and I laughed throughout the entire show, just like last season.

I asked my mom if she had any glass beads (the kind you use in flower arrangements) that I could borrow for a project (planting some divided narcissus bulbs indoors), and she not only did she, but said that I could keep them and the little glass container in which she had kept them. I’m thinking of using the container to create a terrarium for a gift for my oldest (last year’s terrarium didn’t survive).

I didn’t make bread until Saturday, but we made do fine without it this week.

I cooked a small turkey on Saturday. I’ll look to stretch the meat this next week in several meals.

I made broth with the bones.

The children enjoyed playing in the backyard on our swings this week. It’s so nice to have a longer fall this year! I’m grateful for the cooler weather.

What have you done this week to save money? Have you started stocking up for the year by shopping the Thanksgiving deals?

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  1. We order from greateyeglasses.com and they always have frames for $14.95. We go to our local WalMart vision center and try on frames, take measurements of them, and then use that info to choose frames online.- Alethea

  2. Thanks for the suggestion! We have talked about any possible way to offset the cost and it is just not feasible to do anything with all that wood ourselves. The tree is HUGE and it would most likely take 2 grown men to even move logs cut to fireplace size. The wood will be green so there would be no market for it until next year after it has dried. We decided to just let the tree service haul it away.

  3. They way I make applesauce, only the skins, the seeds, and the hardest part of the core are not used, because I use a food mill. There is very little left after I make applesauce. It’s only cheaper if you can get the apples for a low enough price, but I just looked up applesauce again at a store online. I’ts .10 a ounce, which would be $1.60 a pound for apples. I paid .58 a pound, so I think it’s cheaper, even when you take out the weight of the seeds, peels, and little bit of center core. http://theprudenthomemaker.com/index.php/applesauce

  4. I’m just relying on my waterproofing spray to do the trick, though I’ve seen wax that you can apply to waterproof tarps and stuff. I used the spray to waterproof some cloth boots I had and it worked great!

  5. Have you ever tried deep fried turkey chunks? Different way to use a turkey breast and my family loves it better than chicken.

  6. Columbia should be willing to repair the coat for you. A few years ago, one of my daughters had a problem with the zipper on hers, & since it was less than a year old, Columbia replaced the coat. Had it been older, they said they would have repaired it. -Marivene

  7. That is so cool! I love E&S Sales too. It’s about 30 minutes from where I live (Goshen), but worth the drive! Especially all of the places you can go to in Shipshe & Middlebury 🙂

  8. This week, our family:-Made a triple batch of laundry detergent. I had several bottles in my laundry closet that I had bought with coupons before I found Brandie’s website that I wanted to use up, so I had only made a single batch before. And, my mother had given me the bars of soap, so it was even cheaper for us to make!-Used coupons and a good sale to get cereal for .50 a box, cream cheese for .75 a bar (the cheapest you can get it around here!), and free noodles for my boyfriend’s dinner when he works late.-I noticed that our pantry and freezer are almost completely full, so I told my boyfriend that we are now eating exclusively from our current stock of food. I made menu plans for the next two weeks with what we have, and I am very excited to do it. The only things we will need to go out to get are fresh veggies and possibly milk.-We cooked a six pound chicken last night that I was able to get for .99/lb (also the cheapest you can get here). Since we are only a family of 3, we only ate about a 1/3 of the meat when we cooked it. So now, we have two more meals from the meat and we made stock with the bones. I love buying chickens when they are at such a low price because you get so much out of them! And, my son is very excited to use the wish bone when it dries out, so I guess it provides entertainment, too!-Received two more $5 amazon.com gift cards from swagbucks. I am saving these up to buy my boyfriend’s Christmas present…a kindle! I have also been going through my books and DVDs to send it to get more gift cards.

  9. In preparation for hurricane Sandy, I made ice blocks filling my largest saucepans with water and freezing them. I started three days in advance and put the blocks into plastics bags and then back into the freezer. After the hurricane came through, ice was “on sale” for $3.50 for 16 pounds. We lost power during and after the hurricane and I cooked meals using my cast iron skillet on the grill (blueberry pancakes and bacon!) I also figured out how to steam broccoli on the grill. We used an antique glass lamp for light and went to bed early. Who would have thought that 10-12 hours of sleep was frugal? Ben Franklin probably.However, when the power came back on we weren’t very frugal taking long, hot showers!I made a casserole using up lots of small bits of stuff in the refrigerator before the power went out. When the power came back, I did a ton of baking to use up eggs and dairy.Libby

  10. Maybe you could barter with someone I love beets and would barter if I lived close to you. Mavis that feeds her familyon a 100 dollars a month. Has some videos on her site how tobarter. Beets also make wonderful die for clothing and greatfood coloring or you can make homemade finger paint water corn starch cook on stove top remove from heat add beet juice like you are making a gravey.Hope this helps.Patti

  11. Hi Libby, So happy to hear that your family is safe after the hurricane. Thinking of all of those who have lost so much is heartbreaking. Hope the predicted nor’easter doesn’t cause further damage. Take care. Xoxo

  12. My husband is the Pack Master for our cubs and he started a swap box a couple years ago. It’s just one of those big storage bins that usually lives in our basement unless it’s registration time or someone new joins the pack. At the end of the season, families put their caps, ties, and shirts (usually w/ earned patches removed!) for future cubs to use. Every now and again we have to pitch something that’s been too “well loved” but usually there’s enough there for anyone who needs/wants it.

  13. DO NOT use the generic Singulair!! We could not figure out why my sons asthma was not being controlled. When I casually mentioned that the insurance company was now only paying for generic singulair, my doctor instantly knew that was the cause. Apparently some generic drugs are being found not to be as effective as the name brand drugs. there is a program that covers the difference between the name brand and generic. Not sure if it is used in the U.S(I am in Canada) but it is worth looking into. It is called Singulair Patient Assistance Program. Here is a # to call however this may be a Canadian program. 1-800-461-6579. Just so you know.

  14. I love reading all these comments! I’m always learning something new. Over the weekend, I harvested the last of our spinach, onions, beets and parsley. We ate the beets, I froze the beet greens and spinach and will be using the onions soon. We also cooked two whole chickens. This gave us chicken for 7 dinners (or lunch) in the freezer and I canned 14 qts of chicken broth!I also made a 2 qt container of fruit tea, using my apple/cranberry juice I canned earlier this year. (the juice was made from apple peels and dried cranberries after making applesauce).I also made a gallon jug of vinegar rinse and plan to make my own shampoo soon.I have several dry mixes I will be making later this week, continuing working on Christmas presents and making all our meals from scratch.I really appreciate all the “potato” comments. Because of these, I used two baked potatoes last night to make a big pot of potato soup. It was delicious and will be a regular on my menu. (I also used home canned chicken broth and powdered milk so it was an inexpensive meal).Brandy, I’m just curious – can you cook the small white pumpkins you purchased for decoration? I will be cooking 3 orange pumpkins in the next week or two and then pressure canning them (2 we raised and one was given to us).Thanks again for all the frugal tips! Teri

  15. Thanks Laura! We were very fortunate – no trees down and no wind damage. So many others are in horrible situations.Now there is 4 inches of snow in Connecticut at 5:30 on Wednesday evening – not very frugal to have the heat turned up in case we lose power again! Libby

  16. Thank you for the suggestions!I have a neighbor family that likes beets and I was considering asking for a trade, say for the use of her food mill so I can get my softer apples made into applesauce. Since she might not want them all, I thought I might try the recipes too! I really appreciate the ideas! Penelope

  17. That’s amazing. Good for you! This is something I need to do, too. I managed to gain a lot of weight over the summer and am having trouble finding clothes that fit. 🙁 I think closing my kitchen after supper would be a great idea. I’m terrible about snacking once the kids go to bed.

  18. I bought some meat at the grocery store that was marked manager’s special because it was close to the use or freeze by date. I enjoyed a small meal of leftover fresh fruit, crackers, cheese and cookies at work. Thank you to the group that shared the leftovers with staff!I used only a 1/3 of a tank of gas during the week instead of my usual 1/2 of a tank.We kept the heat off at our house during the day for three days. I used a coupon to get a free bag of Lindt chocolates. I will give these as a Christmas gift.I received about ten free Christmas cards in the mail.One of the grocery stores in our area changed their double coupon policy for two days during the past two weeks so I was able to buy quite a few things at rock bottom prices.Received a free sample of diapers that I will share with a co-worker.Thanks Brandy for posting your frugal accomplishments each week on your blog!Jill

  19. Yes you have to pay for a regular eye exam. P/D is pupilliary distance, and you just have to ask for that when they give you the prescription, because they don’t normally write it on there.The ones I ordered for my son look really nice on him. It’s hard because you’re not tyring them on, but you could try some on at a store and then know what shape and color you want, and order online from there.

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