A Year of Savings: 2013
Sept 15: Busy morning and half way through I realized it was late and no dinner...I tried to think of anything I could make with what I had out (1 pound of ground beef) but nothing came to mind or struck my fancy. I went to another source of inspiration: my Pinterest recipe board. Found a recipe that sounded easy enough and used mostly items I had on hand, Beefy Ravioli Bake.
My substitutions were the cost cutters: I used 1 pound of ground beef instead of 1 3/4 pound as the recipe called for, savings $2.99. I didn't have canned tomato soup. I substituted 1 8 ounce can tomato sauce, adding in 1/2 tsp sugar and 1 tbsp of flour. Consistency became same as canned soup as it cooked. I paid $.25 for the tomato sauce. A can of tomato soup costs a good bit more. Savings: $.75. Fresh Ravioli
costs $3.00/9 oz. on sale. I used a package of freeze dried, shelf stable cheese ravioli that cost me $.89. Savings: $2.11. Yes, the dish was economical, my way. Even better, I put half of the casserole in the freezer for a second meal.
Washed a full load of clothes.
I'm out of my favorite bathroom cleaners (both types), so I substituted baking soda and the vinegar and Dawn cleaner that works so very well on the shower. I won't call it a savings as I really like my Comet and Lysol Toilet cleaners, but it was a savings since I didn't have to run into town to buy anything.
Decided to count up my pennies...I found an extra $20 in my wallet that I had no idea I had. I added it to the money I'd been putting aside to cover my shelves for the flea market. Counted that up and lo! I had all I needed to cover that purchase. Savings $60.
Sept 16: Made a batch of homemade biscuits. Cost about $.30. Savings: $1.59 cost of a batch of canned biscuits.
Saved half the biscuits for tomorrow's breakfast.
Worked in shed this morning. Hot! Gracious it was hot and draining, too. John offered up money to buy dinner with at the local diner. I had money to buy dinner with...but I took the money he offered and put aside. I told him we'd indulge in a picnic dinner one day while he's off with that money. Savings: $10.
Planted pots of carrots, peas, spinach, beets.
Watered plants using rainwater we caught.
Found another Pinterest recipe for homemade Nesquick. Mixed up some and had a glass of chocolate milk. It was pretty good. Savings $3.
Sept 17: Harvest Morning. We happily added enough to the tags and taxes fund today to bring our total to enough to pay the taxes on the place...three months ahead or time.
Combined errands while out. I took off trash, dropped off mail, got a haircut (looked great!), went to CVS to pick up a couple of sales items and use up expiring ECBs, stopped and bank and came home. It was a long morning out.
CVS trip: 1 box of hair color $5.99-$2.00 coupon, plus a $2 ECB in return. Hair color for $1.99. Total spent on all items at CVS $14.96, earned $2 ECBs and saved $14.67 in sales items.
Planted lettuces this evening, as well as cilantro and more peas. I wanted a bigger pot for the lettuces than I had so I emptied out the big old washtub we've used for pet water since we moved here. I hammered a nail through the bottom of the tub for drainage. I subbed a 5 gallon bucket that has no lid to fit for the dog's water.
Sept 18: Housework day. Lots of housework. Then more housework. Took me all morning and half the afternoon. House looks lovely. I am t.i.r.e.d. In between rounds of housework, I pulled all the leftovers from the fridge. I had one item to toss: a single steamed broccoli stem. That was my 'trash'. The rest were incorporated into our meal: 1/2 tomato, 1/4 of an onion, 1 cup of leftover grits. I'll feature those grits in a 'Leftover Makeover' shortly, well before I publish this post.
I had two large chicken breasts. Quite large. I decided to cut one breast in half lengthwise and width wise so that I had four flat pieces of breast for dinner. I cut the other breast into nugget sized pieces for another meal. Cost of the breasts was $3.80. Getting two meals from that packet is a savings of $1.90.
Ran out of price tags as I worked on booth items this afternoon. I have plenty of cardstock, plenty of raffia, a hole punch, and a printer. I made up my own design for tags. All I need is to figure out how to get them to print. Savings $5.00.
Washed a full load of dishes.
Made Challah bread. Savings: $3.59.
Sept 19: Bigger shop than usual this week. John needed a haircut and wisely I looked at the sales ad for the grocery next to the salon. I noted bone-in chicken breasts on sale for $.99/pound, just in time as I'd just the day before used up the last of the chicken in the freezer. This particular grocery also carries two brands of turkey sausage that I like a great deal. It's late in the season to buy the Honeysuckle White brand (frozen bulk roll) as they tend to drop off production entirely in preparation for Thanksgiving sales of whole turkeys. However, Tennessee Pride does not do such, so I picked up all they had (3 packages of sausage patties). I also got dish detergent and the soda John prefers. None of these items are available at Aldi. I saved $10 on the chicken breasts which nicely covered the cost of the sausage, so I won't count it as savings in my total.
Target for dog food on sale. Bought two bags, savings $3.00. Noted that every end cap was loaded and they had added multiple clearance signs. I checked out as many as I could but didn't buy anything. I was tempted by a lovely set of napkins and a tablecloth. Then I recalled the deep drawer full of napkins at home and the bottom drawer filled with tablecloths. Until I remove some of these and donate or toss then I'll just skip buying new. savings $4.98/napkins, $9.98/tablecloth.
Did our shopping at Aldi. On sale today was the BlackForest Turkey breast we enjoy so much. I slice thin as sandwich meat. I get 3 full pounds of luncheon slices for $9.99. Compare that to $4/pound for most packages of luncheon slices. Savings $2.
Sept 20: A day out with Mama. I didn't really want to go shopping, nor did I have any desire to randomly wander another grocery. I suggested a long ride, Mama suggested a destination drive with lunch in Warm Springs. We thoroughly enjoyed our drive and came back along another old state highway. Happy discovery of many pre-Civil War era homes along that old roadway. It was my day to buy lunch. I spent from my personal allowance.
Sept 21: John and I went to synagogue. After he asked if I was planning to eat at home or stop on the way. I suggested two possible quick meals I could make at home. We were both satisfied with our options and so we headed home. Arrived just ahead of a big rainstorm that dumped 4 inches of rain (and watered my little potted garden). Savings: $15 (our takeout meals have gotten more expensive lately)...
We were so late arriving home and eating that we let one meal suffice for both lunch and supper.
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