Friday, February 8, 2013

Frugal Friday: How I saved money this week

The week was full and busy but not in the realm of saving money. I didn't have a lot of time to spend in the kitchen this week and it was probably a good thing. I've been cutting back my carbs to keep my blood sugar numbers low so I'm focusing on meat, green veggies and nuts.I'm hoping to make some low carb almond flour waffles this weekend.

Here is what I did in my home this week:

1. Normally I take my 4 year old grandson to the library each week. He picks out a few books and DVD's and then we play at the park. This week I wanted to take him somewhere new. I searched the internet for free preschool activities but came up empty so we took a field trip to the Bass Pro Shop. He loved the huge fish tanks. We looked at the chart and read about each fish. We named each of the 'stuffed' animals around the store (poor things). I'm so happy to have 2 free places to take him. We'll visit different parks once the weather clears up. I'd like to find some time to pull together activities we can do at home, too.

2. My main focus is getting my garden ready for spring planting.  I can't believe how fast grocery prices are rising. Having a garden is one way I hope to deter the cost.  We live in the city and our backyard is normal size but we're finding lots of room to plant veggies, fruit vines and even an apple tree as we pull up the plants. I moved my Hydrangea to the front yard where it will have more shade and moved a lilac bush to the side yard. I think we will have a pretty decent size garden once we finish.


3. My son tore out a brick patio when he was putting in our sewer line. I had been slowly moving the brick but my back was not happy. My daughter and her family came last Saturday ... and bless their hearts.. they moved the bricks to make a border around the square food gardening section. I'm now making a grid inside their brick border with the remaining bricks. I hope to have it finished before March 28 which is supposed to be the last frost. The book recommends using wood but the bricks were free. :-)







4.  The grandson's dug a deep hole (with some help from their daddy) and we buried the leftover concrete from the patio which saved dump fees.

5. I was short one egg for breakfast so I made scrambled eggs and added a few tablespoons of water.

6. I'm saving my large clear plastic bottles (ex. large juice and oil bottles). I'll cut off the bottom and use them as a mini-green house for my seedlings when I transplant in March.  I also read that you can use canning jars if the seedlings are just sprouting.

7. My planting chart says I can plant peppers and tomatoes this week. I hope to do so tomorrow. I'd also like to plant some lettuce seeds. My green onions are doing well in the pot off the patio and are close to being harvested.  The cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, onions, spinach and okra have sprouted and are growing fast. I keep praying and asking God to help us reap a big harvest.  

8. I placed my sprouted seeds outside (not in direct sun) this week. I turned off the plant light while they were outside to save money. 

9. Okay.. so I didn't exactly save money on this last point but I hope it will save money in the future. My daughter had a Tupperware party last night and I purchased a container that is supposed to keep your lettuce (and other veggies) fresh for up to 3 weeks. I hope it works.

10. I'm researching what kind of outside burner to use for canning this summer. I have a glass top stove and read there is a chance it can break under the weight of the canner. I found a 2 burner stove at Bass Pro for $99. I hate putting out the money but  it's less expensive than a new stove. I can also cook on it during the hot summer months to keep my kitchen cool. 

That's about it for this week. I always love hearing what you're doing in your home. I'm learning so much from you gals. What did you do in your home this week?


18 comments:

  1. I have heirloom tomatoes growing under a light to transplant in garden. we planted potatoes, onions, garlic, turnips, collards, sugar peas, spinach and lettuce already. I LOVE my veg garden...mixed with herbs and flowers. Good Luck. Not only will you save money you will have the best food and maybe could make money selling the excess. I will pray for a great harvest

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    1. We have a seed store nearby so I was able to purchase some heirloom seeds. I can't wait for the harvest. Thank you for your prayers. We've had small gardens in the past but we're trying to push forward to do more.

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  2. Terrific ideas! Thanks for sharing.

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  3. Well, I did cook every day this week. Meals at home much cheaper than eating out. Yesterday I went to Walgreens to pick up a prescriptions, and I looked at the marked down toys. They had a big selection, I guess what did not sell at Christmas. I decided to go ahead and get as much as I could for our 5 grandchildren. I filled a buggy! The toys were $2, $3, $4 mostly. I got cars that crank and then run, play doh sets, puzzles, a Disney Princess make-up set, did not count how many things I bought, but I put $70.00 on our credit card. We have the money to pay it off next month, so I didn't mind doing that. It will save money and running from store to store at Christmas, so saves gas too.

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  4. Hi Georgene- all your gardening plans sound wonderful!
    yes, the Tupperware Fridgesmart containers are great. I have about 6 of them and keep as much produce in them as I can. If it is fresh, when you put it in there, it really will stay fresh a long time. They are expensive but I got a couple from my mom and a few at yard sales.

    My grands wanted to go play at Old McDonalds (McDonalds) So I took them there last week. They played a long time but we did not get any food there. What I saw what other people eating just looked horrible so we left when they got tired. I hope it was not wrong and we won't do it often, but that food just was not what I wanted to feed my grands.

    Hope you have another frugal week!

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    1. Hey Rhonda, I am picky about what I feed my grand kids, if they want a fruit snack they get an apple or a banana. I don't keep cookies and treats in the house. I watch the boys several days a week, they eat good nutritious food, natural peanut butter, lots of fruit, they like veggie burgers but don't realize they are veggie burgers :)
      Bean

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  5. I have a very old lettuce and a celery keeper that I have had forever. They are wonderful. You won't regret that purchase. It will pay for itself before you have had them very long.

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  6. I was thinking this week that I really have broken that shopping thing. I never shop anymore unless there is something I need. I use to shop for recreation. lol. Now I have to plan my purchases for when I have the money. First I try to recycle something I already have or figure out how to do without. I've gotten to the point financially where the less I spend the better. My dd is a great bargin shopper, but I find if I'm looking I'm tempted to buy. She says I need to know prices better, but I feel like it's too much temptation. Maybe I could look things up on line to get an idea of prices.

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  7. Well done! It looks like you're going to have a nice big garden!!! I'm not going to talk about saving money as I just bought myself a new camera lens this week, but I was surprised with a nice amount of extra income and was able to add $1K to my emergency fund! God is good!

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  8. Your garden area is wonderful.I am praying to move somewhere that I can have a garden. I used to teach preschool.I bet your grand would like making something to feed the birds.We roll pinecones in peanutbutter and then bird seed and hang it in a tree or set it on a table. Money saving mom has free
    homeschool curriculum on her blog
    for all ages. Grand kids love doing anything with their Gmas.
    I remember digging worms with mine some of my favorit memories are working in the garden with my grand parents. I am praying for a large harvest for you.
    Have a bless week.
    Patti B

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    1. Thank you Patti! Great idea about the pinecones. I'll start looking for some free ones. I'd love to feed the birds and I think he would really enjoy it, too. I'll check out that website. I homeschooled but mine were already in school when I started. Thanks for the prayers. :-)

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  9. one free activity we do with our grandsons is to take them the Rural King, a farm supply store. RK sells lots of farm stuff, some food, some toys, in the spring they sell chicks and bunnies, always fun to see. There is always free popcorn available. We go a few times a year, generally we need something and the little boys just love the store. In the fall there are lots of hunting things out and they check out the hides on display. Always a fun place to go.

    Other things I like to do with the boys that are free, Story Time at our local library once/week, visit the many parks in our area when the weather is nice, the pet store is a fun place to go. And sometimes the boys go grocery shopping with me, they enjoy this, we always spend a lot of time in the produce section they love looking at all the fruits and veg, and if they behave well then we go to the pet department and look at the fish for sale :)
    To a small child the ordinary everyday is an adventure.

    Bean

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  10. Wow! Again, so inspiring. I am going outside and doing a few things now to get a jump on our spring.

    Can't do as much as you do because my wrists are hurting from my morning de-cluttering of our hope=to-be guest bedroom.

    Hugs and prayers,
    Carol

    Hugs and prayers,
    Carol

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  11. I would definitely not recommend canning on a glass stove top. I had one burst into thousands of little pieces after a day of canning one year.

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  12. Belinda, were you pressure canning or water bath canning on your glass top stove when it shattered? I have water bath canned on mine many times, but usually only a day at a time a few times a year. Would you mind sharing what brand stove this was? I have had a Corelle tempered glass counter saver shatter into bits and go flying and it was scary. It cracked like ice and then went everywhere. Thankfully, no one was hurt. It is marketed as a cutting board or trivet and I had my crockpot on it when it went to pieces.

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  13. Hi -
    Just wanted to chime in on the activities you put together for your grands - I think it's awesome and sweet but wanted to remind you not to stress out about finding activities without breaking your budget. My kids (8 and 5, boys) favorite thing to do with my mom is just hang out at her house. I think it's the undivided attention ;)

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  14. I'm new to this blog and love it. Just wanted to say this after reading the last post that our grandkids just love to come here and hang out. We have 5 acres so they can go outside and play freely but they mostly, the 2 boys, like to go out to the shop with grandpa and tear apart junk or build something. Last weekend we had the 10 year old out and he loves to do things with tools. So grandpa supervised his building of a birdhouse. Let him run all the tools except the table saw. He was so, so proud of that birdhouse that he is giving his parents for Christmas. Nancy

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