A Year of Savings: 2013
Made my own barbecue sauce earlier this morning. I incorporated some jelly that was starting to sugar up. It was a homemade jar of Blackberry/Apple jelly that was given to us. It provided a nice sweetness to the homemade sauce. Savings $.99 the current sales price of store bought name brand sauce.
Shopped at home today for ketchup and regular coffee.
Shopped online for two items I can't buy easily locally. It sounds odd, but purchasing Tylenol is practically impossible at my area stores. I can order online however, without a problem and without being tempted by a dozen other things. I made this purchase with Amazon credit earned from Swagbucks. That's a savings of $13.99 for us.
Also bought decaf coffee online. I divide this over four pay periods and take the cash from the grocery budget. We've not found a brand we like half so well as this German one and it costs no more than sales priced bags at the grocery of other brands.
While cooking dinner today I let one prep serve for two meals. I chopped extra vegetables for fried rice. I cooked an extra chicken breast (small) and extra rice. Now I need only toss everything into the pan, add some garlic and stir until it's all hot through and the vegetables are crisp tender for a second meal later this week.
I have been steadfast in my refusal to go to town and purchase anything this pay period. Not one purchase except for those two made online today. Not one trip into town since last Wednesday.
July 9: Yesterday I thought it was Tuesday all day long. Today I was convinced it was July 10. I seem to be determined to lose a day somewhere this week!
Ran errands this morning after we had our Harvest day. I went by the Post Office, dropped off a local bill, stopped at Mama's for a moment to give her a receipt (and picked up a handful of coupons and a magazine she'd read and set aside for me), went to the grocery to purchase pet food (used the very last bits this morning) and into CVS to pick up John's prescription. While at CVS I went to the kiosk and printed off coupons. I got 1 bottle of Irish Spring body wash for $.99 (savings $2) and 2 big bags of M&Ms candies for $2 (savings $6). Picked up peaches at the peach shed ($5 for a bag that weighs roughly 8 pounds) and bought fried chicken at the local diner. That looks more costly just at first but we'll easily get three meals off that box of take out chicken. I'll freeze leftovers today. We had a piece each today at dinner with a tomato sandwich. Encore appearance for dinner one day next week with vegetables and legs and wings for picnic fare should we decide to make a day trip anywhere.
No one has pet foods on sale this week (not the brands my pets like). I went into a grocery next to CVS to check their price on food there. Not anymore than the bigger groceries in the big town where we normally shop and way less costly than what it runs in my own local grocery. I'm glad I checked...I had to have food for tomorrow morning and getting it at that store meant I didn't have to go further on my errands run today or pay too much locally. Savings over shopping locally: $9.
July 10: John wanted a big breakfast this morning. It seemed to be the appropriate day to make a low meat meal for our dinner. I try to balance the days when we have a heavy breakfast with a low/no meat day. I made eggs and fried Turkey Spam slices, grits, toast and heated a portion of Danish I'd frozen. I told you it was a big breakfast! We ate heartily and enjoyed it very much.
Made my own pizza crust. Today's crust had cornmeal as well as flour in it. I wanted a Southwestern Taco pizza. I had about 1/4 cup beef chorizo that I cooked until crisp, 1/2 can of chili with beans, 1/2 cup black beans and 1/2 whole kernel corn. I also tossed in about 1/2 cup Pico de Gallo and some cumin and minced garlic. I really ought to call it 'Leftover pizza'! We do occasionally enjoy a frozen pizza that we purchase on sale for $5. Today's pizza didn't cost anywhere near that! I estimate I had about $1.50 in it, crust, cheese and toppings. Savings $3.50.
Made potato salad for our supper. I cooked extra potatoes for hash browns one morning. I boiled eggs, too. 1 for potato salad, 1 for tuna salad and made the rest into egg salad for sandwiches.
Making tuna salad and egg salad saves us the cost of sandwich meats. Savings: $7 the cost of two packets of luncheon meat.
July 11: Grocery day. We started our day with breakfast. That's key to savings as going into the store hungry really does lead to increased impulse buys.
We started at Aldi. I planned to go to Publix today as well, but wanted to go by Aldi first for two good reasons. I had my list and wanted to buy the items I could find at Aldi. It is hit or miss in some areas to be sure. For the past two months there has been no light olive oil. However it was there today and I bought two bottles. If I'd started at Publix I'd have bought at Publix simply because there hadn't been any previously at Aldi.
We walk every aisle at Aldi every time we go in. The store is small square footage, the stock changes and if you don't walk the aisles you don't see the items. Not only did I find light olive oil this time, but on another aisle I normally don't look over very well we found Pineapple Juice. I like to keep canned pineapple juice on the pantry shelf. It's great to treat bronchitis and head colds and in summer it's a nice refreshing iced drink.
Shopping at Aldi first yesterday saved $4 the difference in cost of olive oil between the two stores.
I was spot on my budgeted amount for groceries this week. I couldn't be happier over that.
Opted not to buy a packet of cookies today. I came home and baked cookie dough we've had in the freezer. I baked 2 dozen cookies. Savings $2.49 the cost of the packet of cookies I put back. And by the way, I priced a dozen cookies at Publix: $5.99. Mind you I am not tempted to buy them, but it does put a greater savings on baking at home doesn't it?
I was tempted by the glossy magazines at the checkout. I saw several that I thought I'd enjoy trying but I bought NONE. Magazines are so pricey these days and truly, I am usually disappointed when I buy them. I came home and pulled out another stack of my vintage June/July magazines. Savings $7.99 for ONE magazine. I brought out 7 to look through.
July 12: Used leftovers to make fried rice for lunch. It's always a savings when I can reinvent our leftover foods.
I really wanted to order a special hand/foot cream set...but at the moment I can't see making the purchase at $35. I found a combination on Pinterest that I'm trying. The ingredients cost me more than they might have if I'd gotten them at the dollar stores as suggested (it pays to read those suggestions prior to shopping...obviously I didn't), but I still paid less than $10 for the three items. We'll see how this regime works. Savings $25.
We worked hard today. As a treat we took a nap after we'd finished working. When we woke I made us a special treat of a fizzy lemonade over crushed ice. The lemonade drink was our splurge this week (still fit nicely in the budget). I used the blender to crush ice from our ice-maker.
July 13: We planned our luncheon out today at a favorite burger place. We'd made up our minds before going to place our order, so we stuck nicely to our planned budget of $10.
There's a book study at synagogue that I wanted to participate in. I didn't plan to go to the meetings but to follow along in the book. However, I will be going to the meetings, as they fall on John's work week, the week we'd normally not travel, so I'll have the gasoline to go. Hooray for being able to stick to the budget and participate too! Books were available for purchase from the synagogue, but I scored mine on Amazon for a small savings of $5.
July 14: Peaches were perfectly ripe this morning. I planned to put in the freezer. John suggested I make a cobbler. I did both. I used every single one of the peaches I bought this pay period. You know I consider it a savings when I do that, so $5 spent and saved. Works out to a nice $0 for waste doesn't?
Bagged up the two pints of blueberries I bought at Aldi which I'd washed and flash frozen on a cookie sheet.
Another of those spent/saved $2.38.
Made spaghetti sauce from scratch and slow simmered it. I used leftovers I'd been storing in the freezer: tomatoes and cooked Italian turkey sausage, zucchini cubes, spaghetti sauce, bell peppers. I plan to use leftover sauce to make Calzone. I am amused at times at how often I have leftovers of leftovers that were made over...I expect to have enough to fill Calzone enough to freeze extras for future meals. It truly is a blessing to have food stretch and stretch so!
Felt rather ill this morning and afternoon...I keep sliced ginger root in the freezer for seasoning. I put a bit into my water to help fight nausea. It works wonderfully well. No trip to town needed to purchase either ginger ale nor do we need to waste gasoline. savings $3.