Thrifty Thursday

Buying a new slipcover instead of a new chair...I saved us about $450 on the conservative side.  This chair was perfectly sound, but the old blue cover was worn, stained and torn.  My new slipcover covers those defects and matches the color of our other recliner perfectly.

 Saturday:  Planning ahead really paid off this past week.  I had a feeling...and I've learned to go with those feelings when I have them...that John would want to attend service somewhere this weekend.  So I planned a meal that might easily be reheated in the microwave.  I made a simple salad to go with it and when we left home this morning, I was assured of a quick and easy meal for us whenever we got back home.  As it happened, that was around 2:30 since John wanted to run to town for mower gas after we got back.  I had dinner on the table in about 9 minutes from start to finish.  Not bad!

Plenty of time to think about future savings today.  Hanging the clothes on the line meant our electric bill rose only about $9 over June, the month when we see summer 'jumps' due to higher cost of kilowatts.  I'm curious to see how our July bill does as we continued drying outdoors with all that extra washing I did.

John stopped to fill on my car on our way to synagogue this morning.  I had not put gasoline in it for two weeks and still had a  quarter of a tank of gasoline.  Truthfully we could have managed until next weekend on that amount if not all the way up to payday in the first week of August.

Sunday:  John and I spent the day just piddling about the house.  No Sunday paper.  No running to town to pick up anything extra.  I made dinner right here at home.  We didn't go into town or take a ride.  We didn't even wash a load of clothes!  I say this whole day was a 'savings' day all around.

Made a roast for dinner.  There are plenty of leftovers to make roast beef hash tomorrow for our dinner.

Used the crock pot to cook the roast, keeping the heat of the stove to a minimum.

Monday:  Monday routine housework for me and for John, mowing the lawn.  The bigger mower we bought two years ago has really paid off in gasoline savings and in time savings.  It typically takes John about 2 1/2 hours now to mow the entire lawn, where it used to take about 5-6 hours with the smaller one.  We use about 1/2 a tank of gasoline (about 2 gallons) compared to the previous 5 gallons.

Since John was mowing I knew he'd want a cool meal midday.  I am the stickler for having a hot meal daily, so I prepared the roast beef hash then let it cool.  That would do for supper.  For lunch I made sandwiches, chips, and chilled plums.

Off to jury duty.  It took just one hour for them to release us all.  I'm happy to do my civic duty but the check they gave us will go into the vacation fund, which makes me even happier.

It took just a little while to reheat the hash. I'd made the salad this morning as well.

Washed a full load of dishes about an hour before we went to bed.  I like using big appliances in off peak hours and in the cooler portions of the evening.  The dishes were allowed to air dry overnight.

Tuesday:  A morning to go vote, run errands and have fun.  We combined all these together to save on gasoline.

We dropped off trash, voted, then headed to the fun part of the day, a visit to the bookstore.  This was John's treat to me.  After the bookstore we went to our favorite pizzeria and ordered a sub sandwich.  Books and lunch came from our entertainment fund.

From there to the grocery where we cashed in coins (we save these to donate to favorite charities), picked up lettuce and ice cream.  John grabbed two boxes of crayons for $.50 each and I picked up a 4 ounce roll of goat cheese for $2.  We came out for under $15 for it all.

Then we took the car to the car wash.  John used an automated wash that does the washing work for you.  It cost just a little more than my usual car wash but not by enough to warrant complaining.  I did get a free spray of Rain X on the car and we could vacuum it for free as well.

Back home, I made a batch of hot fudge sauce to go on our vanilla ice cream.  The recipe made about 2 1/2 cups of hot fudge.  I daresay I made it for less than the $2.99 I would have paid at supermarket for 14 ounces.

We were pretty satisfied after our lunch and ice cream.  Supper was just cream cheese and bagels with sliced peaches.

Wednesday:  No day out with Mama today.  I thought we'd get used to the new work schedule before I made plans to do anything.  Besides, we were off together last Friday.  I like to keep my spending days to a minimum.

I worked about the house this morning doing routine housework.  Washed a load of clothes.  John hung one to dry and the load of sheets he divided and tossed into the dryer.  I think he cut down the drying time by about 10 minutes doing it that way.  If I 'd done them I'd have staggered loads and hung both to dry, but his was a good compromise and the task was done with in a shorter time frame.

Thawed several meats for use over the next few days.  I prefer to thaw several at once as they keep one another cold and slow down the thawing process.

The new shift means that John will take only snacks with him, what he'd normally eat in evenings here at home.  Are we saving money not packing two meals daily?  Probably not so much, but we'll save packing snacks which can be pricier than a meal, so it will balance out.

Very disappointed in some of the produce we purchased at Aldi this last time.  A bag of oranges had four that rotted immediately though we'd checked them over well before choosing the bag.  Tomatoes too rotted quickly.  It is however, good incentive to make me use up the remaining produce.  I worked these items into meal plans for this week.

Sat down this afternoon and planned August menus.

I forgot I turned up the AC until about 11pm.  I slid it down a few degrees for sleeping hours.

Thursday:  Up a little early this morning. Made a big breakfast for us.  I mused that breakfast is one of those meals that may be bought about as cheaply as I make it here at home at most hometown diners.  Big city restaurants charge a little more but it's still a good value meal.

Cleaning requires more effort than anything else.  I used an old toothbrush and plain old water to clean a few grungy areas in the bathroom.

Now I know what the cryptic message was on my chicken. lbls was what  I wrote...It meant one BIG and one small breast in the packet.  The size difference completely changed my meal plan (one was literally half the size of the other).  I baked both and managed to save enough of the larger breast to make two chicken sandwiches for John this afternoon/evening.

Put up peaches in the freezer that we were obviously not going to eat before they were too ripe.

"Shopped" the freezer and fridge while making dinner today.

Roasted vegetables, using up the last of the produce we'd purchased this past week.  

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