Friday, November 30, 2012

Frugal Friday: How I saved money this week!

Is everyone done with their Christmas shopping? I have one gift certificate and 1 gift left to purchase and then I should be done. YAY!

 I'm looking forward to starting our Advent reading this Sunday. All the decorations are up. I got rid of a lot of tubs because we just don't have room for them in our new little 'cottage'. Decorating goes much faster when you use less STUFF. *smile*

Christmas is my favorite time of the year.

1. I went through the house and unplugged cords to appliances and gadgets I don't use daily. I've read that you lose electricity even when you're not using the appliance.

2.  I started using one extra dishpan to soak and rinse dishes instead of using the faucet to rinse off the dishes.

3.  I washed, dried and saved several freezer bags to reuse. (they did not have meat or cheese in them previously).

4.  Our Christmas tree would not fit in our home so we got rid of it after we moved in. My mom had a small 3 foot tree that she wasn't using so instead of buying a new one we were thankful to receive hers. I'm not sure how many years it will last because it's shedding.. but I'm not sure how many years I'll last.. so I'm thankful to have a free tree this year. :-)

5.  My husband loves Earl Grey Tea. I found it at the dollar store and he likes it so the difference will save me $1.25.

6. I saved the plastic wrap I used to wrap waffles to freeze. I'll reuse it for the next batch.

7. Instead of using the dryer this week while it's raining I've found ways to hang my clothes up in the garage, under the patio and on racks in the house.

8. I'm saving small pieces of Christmas paper as I'm wrapping gifts. I run it through the shredder and then save it to use in gift bags instead of tissue paper. Waste not, want not. :-)

9. I was interested in purchasing 2 devotionals but found them free online.

10. I found a book at the library that I had originally wanted to purchase. I'm glad that I didn't buy it because once I got it home I discovered I did not like it. I use the library a lot. While I was there I checked out there computers. Someday I may need to cancel our monthly internet and I think I could easily use the library's computers instead.

There's more but I'll save it for next week. What did you do this week to save money in your home?

Check out Frugal Friday over at Life as Mom


  1. I love the idea of recycling Christmas wrap into shredding for gift bags. I started a No More Christmas Cr**p campaign a few years ago meaning buy no brand new items, try not to buy anything for Christmas at all except presents (or the items to make presents if you do so) and try and only use recycled items or those bought second hand for wrapping. I have saved loads of money this way. I save ribbons, special store bags that can be repurposed, wrapping paper if still in good shape for smaller items.

    1. I like your idea about purchasing gift wrap from the second hand stores. I'll keep my eye out for that. I wait until the day after Christmas and go to the dollar stores where they sell the remainder of wrappings, bows, etc. for .50 each.

  2. One idea I have found for gift bags is to buy those reusable bags at the dollar stores (some stores, like Marshall's and TJMaxx often have them for $1-$3). They cost less than a paper gift bag at other stores and can be re-used for other things after the person opens their gift. I have used them to take extra changes of clothes in the car for the kids, to tote books to and from the library, keep store ads together for Black Friday, etc... And usually the designs are pretty cute!

    1. Great idea Myrima (is this Myrima, my niece? *smile*). I'll keep an eye open for a good deal.

  3. I've actually used my grocery brown bags as gift wrap and I would draw Christmas pictures on the wrap.

  4. I saved money by giving away some of my collections of Creative Memories photo albums for some family members. I used to see these and thought I needed a supply.

    I am saving money by making some of my gifts. Not sure where I will find the time, but most of the supplies for it I have on hand.

    I feel that our disabled husbands need attention and when we are too cheap we deprive them. My husband loves to eat out and so we do that. Often we take home at lease half of the meal anyway.

  5. I agree about being careful about not making things harder on our husbands who are disabled. We were going with no heat at all but it dawned on me that my husband is in pain all day and that I don't want him to suffer more from the cold (he had mentioned he had been cold for 3 days) so I keep the heat on during the day in the room where he sits and turn it off at night when we are in bed. I also have a cable package so that he can have something to watch during the day. If/when I stop my part time job then that will go but we purchased an antenna to fill in.

    1. There are boxes you get now for watching TV on old TVs. Do you have the new flat screen TV where you don't need a box? If not, I have one of those boxes I can send you if you ever need to stop that cable subscription.

      You are so wise with all your saving.

  6. Did you say you'd had rain? We're desperate for some moisture, everything is withering and dying here.

    I wish I could give some hints I've used on saving money this week, but it seems like all I've done is spend money on computer 'stuff'...... I hope next week is better.

    I always love reading what you've done to economize.

  7. We are using space heaters to keep the Propane bill low.

    today I served some Pork BBQ that I had frozen earlier--it was great. I bought a pork butt a couple months ago when it was on sale $1.79/#--very good deal. I cooked it and froze it in one meal packs for the two of us. Much less $ than buying pre-cooked BBQ for 2.
    I wanted some slaw and baked beans with the Q. I purchased a small bottle of slaw dressing and a small pre-shred cabbage slaw. Often I will make my own of these but I don't have any mayo--rarely use it, and I wasn't sure it would be good if I made it with egg beaters so I decided to just get a small slaw sauce & I went with the pre-shred thinking I'd make 2 salads from it and save time since I'm pretty busy lately. Not as cheap as homemade, but better than totally store bought. :)
    For baked beans I decided to mix together some pantry canned goods--I used some store brand pork & beans and some coupon deal- black eyed peas, added a little molasses and some bbq sauce--and it was very good. :)

    I was working on a wedding cake topper for my shop and needed fabric to make a mini kilt for a groom. I decided to print a mini version of the groom's family tartan onto a piece of linen I had in my stash from when I used to work in a needlework shop. I googled a diy recipe for something to soak the cloth in so it would allow the inkjet ink to print nicely. It turned out easy to make, with household things that would be useful in the future. The kilt turned out nice. I thawed some sale price roast for italian beef to crock pot tomorrow.
    I've found a cheaper recipe for the beef than I used to make. I used to use lots of gardinera and pickled pepperonicini & store bought italian dressing mix. Now I make my own italian dressing mix, & instead of buying pricey pickled things I use a mix of vinegar and water with the homemade dressing mix & a sale priced chuck roast to make my hubby's favorite meal--which tastes just as good, and is now about 5 or 6 dollars less to make. :)

    I guess that's enough. :) Its my habit to always look at what I'm doing and think of a way to do the same for less--but 'within reason' we're not totally broke these days, but we're taking on a new mortgage soon and getting older--so my hope is to be able to pay that mortgage down if possible before Hubby retires. therefore I am always looking to save. :)

  8. These last few months I've done what I never thought possible - to live on very little. It's amazing what can be done if we try and put our mind to something. I would say that God has a big part in it as well, because on paper it seems impossible.

    When you start selling some belongings, you realize you need very little in life to get by. Buying stuff, keeping and maintaining it is a lot of work and energy. Keeping a roof above and the basics, that alone makes me happy to be blessed with such luxuries.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your family.

  9. I noticed you mentioned not using the dryer. I rarely ever use my dryer. I have a tension rod for a shower stall in a doorway and hang almost everything I wash on hangers there. Shirts or other items that hang can go directly into the closet once dry. I can hang pants to the clotes hangers with clothes pins or using hangers that have built in clips. Smaller items go on the drying rack. I've been doing this for years and it prolongs the life of your clothing in addition to reducing the electic bill. In winter some extra humidity is very welcome. I use the outdoor clothes line for sheets as well as socks and undies when the weather permits. About the only thing I use my dryer for is towels.


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