Frugal Friday



My 'new' wall in the living room, redone with things I had on hand and the thrift store pictures (the two long ones) I bought several months ago.

 Saturday:  A quiet day at home.  I cooked food yesterday and needed only to reheat today to eat.  Microwave reheating is a lot cooler than turning on the oven.

I finally have the summer measures of food down.  Maddie likes about 1 1/4 cups.  Trudy is a 1 1/2 cup measure.  The cat prefers just under 1/4 cup.  I seldom have leftover food these days to pour back into the container.

Sometimes doing nothing at all is the biggest money saver, lol.  I watched a couple of programs on the food channel but for the most part I spent the day reading, thinking about the week ahead, planning meals, working on goals for next month, planning a small grocery shop to restock pantry items that were out or low and were advertised as sales.  Besides the Air Conditioning there was little electricity used this day, no gasoline used and because meal and snack had been planned, I had limited the usage of those items.

Sunday:  I always feel so energetic after Shabat rest.  Today I started a full load of clothes and hung to dry moments after John left for work.

It took about 1 1/2 hours of housework to get house in good shape.  I used baking soda to clean the kitchen sink.  It works wonders on stainless steel and doesn't scratch.  I used a bit to remove a spot on the counter where a label had left a stain.

Went to the grocery store, list in hand and bought items on sale to restock pantry.  It wasn't what I planned to do this month but it was necessary.  I had several outages when I did my inventory at the end of May and they've increased over the past 2 months.  Mayonnaise was not only on sale but a new variety of the brand had coupons attached to the top to encourage buyers to try it.  I got a brand name mayonnaise for $1.79 a jar.  I can't get that low a price on Aldis brand mayonnaise.

Lesson brought home today:  I like chicken livers occasionally.  John does NOT.  I bought a liver dinner from a popular chicken place.  I realized as I drove away with my dinner that the amount of livers was about 1/3 of a pound...and for $1.69 I could buy a pound of chicken livers and cook them right here at home.  I paid a good deal more than $.56 for my liver dinner!  I like to eat out but over and over again I find myself comparing what I might have bought compared to what I got.  The truth is I could have bought ALL the components of that meal for about the cost of the dinner and had enough to serve four, with leftovers of the vegetables to use in other meals.  Truthfully every single item I buy through a restaurant or fast food cannot be translated into such a quantity, but let's face it cabbage, potatoes and livers are cheap foods already.
Did I enjoy my treat meal?  I did.  But I enjoyed thinking about how I could have it at home for far less a great deal more.  I'll definitely buy some livers and divide them into portions to cook for myself in the future.

I turned up the AC to 80F before leaving home.  I didn't turn it down when I came in either.  It was pleasant until late afternoon when the western sun heated up the house.

Prepared John's work lunch.  I share this now and again, but John eats breakfast at home and takes a lunch and supper in an insulated bag to his workplace.  This saves us hundreds of dollars each year and he's insured that he (a) has time to eat something throughout the day, (b) gets good foods not junk foods for his meals.  Paramedics (cops, firefighters, etc) who ordered food from fast food or restaurants can tell you that nine times out of ten they are called out to do a job before they ever get more than a few bites in their mouths.  Leaving food behind and having to order more later would be very expensive don't you agree?

Used dishwater to water the front porch plants.

Monday:  A day planned to be at home.  I had a list of things I wanted to accomplish, made out yesterday afternoon.

Turned up the AC as soon as John had left.

Started a load of laundry.  I had two loads to do today and wanted to get them both hung out to dry.

Sat down and planned out meals for the first part of the week.

Organized coupons.

Balanced checkbook and got bills ready for payment.  This is Harvest Day in our home.

My big projects today: clean off the front porch and get the living room wall finished at last.  The front porch was the easiest job of all.  Amazingly a good sweep, removing dead plants and picking up items we'd dumped and left made the front porch welcoming once more.

The living room wall took a few hours and a bit more work.  Lots of measuring, scavenging inside the house for items that would work, rethinking some choices, etc.  In the end, I was very pleased.  I re-used a frame I had on hand.  Other items used I bought at thrift shops or store clearance and set aside.  I am well pleased with the overall arrangement now.  John needs to hang one item for me that is too far out of my reach even with the step stool.

Packed a work lunch for John.

Used dishwater to water the plants.

Tuesday:  Typically, I started a load of laundry and hung to dry as soon as John was gone.

Washed a full load of dishes at day's end, in the dishwasher.

Meant to go out to bank etc today but John and I are going to be within a 1/2 block of our bank Wednesday morning.  I'll wait and go with him.

Decided against running into town to pick up a lone sales item at the local grocery.

Wednesday:  John had an early morning meeting at work.  I went along with him.  Why?  Because the stores we shop at for groceries are the same distance from his work place as our home.  Our home is also the same distance to his work.  We saved one round trip with my going with him.

Scanned computer for new sales at one store (cycles start on Wednesday) to see what items we needed that were best buys there.  Glad I checked.  Several dairy items and a few others on my list were great buys there.

John decided to do local errands before we headed home.  He went into the automotive store to get oil and filters for the cars and truck.  This money was set aside over a period of time so not a hard hit to the budget.

Stopped at the peach shed and bought my last bag of peaches for the summer...sob.  The season is done and they will be shutting down this weekend.  Can't wait until they are ripe next year!  I bought just the usual $5 bag which contains about 14  peaches.  We like to eat them fresh and I know any more than that will be waste.

We made lunch here at home.

Our treat today was a homemade frozen lemonade.  I bought two bags of lemons to make more lemon juice cubes to use in our favorite summertime drink.

Thursday:  John off to golf. Sent powerade and water with John due to the heat outdoors.  I know he'll be drained when he comes home.

I did housework, then sat down to plan weekend meals.  I planned to use the most perishable fresh foods and fruits first.

Decided to bake a weekend treat.  I combined a recipe that sounded good with elements from two other recipes that had similar flavors.  I experiment like this all the time, lol.  My experiment was tasty: Blueberry lemon tea loaf.

Refilled water bottles.

Carried dishwater out to pour over the plants.

Supper this evening was a cool and easy cheese, fruit and crackers plate.  I had a variety of cheeses in the fridge, a variety of crackers in the cabinet and all sorts of summer fruits.  It was a light meal with enough fiber and protein and carbs to make us feel full.

More and more lately we're shutting off the tv when either of us finds we're endlessly channel surfing.  It saves electricity, it saves frustration and it makes the house seem so peaceful.

Friday:  John off to work that extra shift.  This may be the last of the extra work unless someone is on vacation but it sure has been nice to get almost through summer with an extra bit of money every other pay period.

Made out a list to go to Walmart with today.  I go so seldom these days that I was surprised to find my list was considerably shorter than I'd imagined it would be. And I stuck to it pretty hard.  I used my cell phone to take photos of things I saw that I thought I wanted rather than putting them in my buggy and changing my mind when I got home.

One item I purchased today was a slipcover for our old blue recliner.  That recliner is so old that there are still milk spots on the wood runners from Katie's bottles!  Nope not ashamed of that fact in the least.  I left them there on purpose.
I've been pricing slipcovers at various places online including Overstock.  I could find some good deals but never the color I wanted.  Today the two coincided: right price/right color.  I snapped it up right away.  I'm proud of that recliner now.  It may be old but it's good and solid and just needed a cosmetic makeover.  Done and done.

I thought if I felt up to it I'd run into the local thrift stores and plunder around but there was a storm brewing.  I wanted to get on home.  I'd already gotten hard soaked by one storm as Mama and I were out and about.  It wasn't my wet clothes though, but the idea that I'd like to be home to unplug the tv and computers in case of any power surges.

Brought home half my lunch.  I ate 1/2 of that for my supper and saved the other half as a tasty treat for John when he comes in.  Then I think we'll share that last bit of Hazelnut chocolate we bought the other day at Aldi.

The rain came and lowered temperatures so that the AC has actually been cutting on and off.  Hooray!  I'll appreciate that come next billing time.

That's it for this week!


1 comment:

Elaine @ Sunny Simple Life said...

Some really great frugal ideas here. My husband take a lunch every too and has for years. So much healthier. I too am trying to find more ways to save. $25 a week food budget is amazing. We are six in this house so it seems I spend that a day though I don't but we sure go through the food over here.

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