Friday, September 30, 2016

Frugal Friday File, week 39...


Successes:
1.  Bathed the dog myself, cleaned his ears, clipped his nails.  No grooming fee.

2.  Finally returned the too-small, never-used pet carrier to WalMart.  I told myself that if I hadn't returned it by this weekend, it was going in the garage sale.  I knew that at the garage sale I would only get a fraction of what I had paid for it, so that was my incentive to get it done.  I was running early for an appointment Wednesday, so I picked up the carrier and went to WalMart on the way to appointment.  That 15 minute detour returned $28.63 back to my wallet.

3.  Wanted lunch out.  Came home instead.  Peanut Butter and Jelly...yum.

4.  No purchases this week.  I've been staying home and away from e-commerce.

5.  The garage sale at Kasey's that I thought was tomorrow...is TODAY and tomorrow.  Umm, I thought I still had today to gather things.  There's my procrastination biting me in the heinie again.  We had already taken some stuff over there a week or so ago, so I made $30 this morning (thanks, Kasey!)  I took some more stuff over today, so hope it is busier tomorrow and maybe make a little more.

Keep Trying:  
Have not done very well cooking this week.  I was proud of myself up until Wednesday.  

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  leftovers
Sunday:  Sunday family dinner at Kasey's
Monday:  Turkey and Wild Rice soup
Tuesday:  Fried Rice
Wednesday:  *fried chicken
Thursday:  *Tex-Mex
Friday:  *friend's night out

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)
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Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Braids and freckled faces...

I got called as a last-minute sub for volleyball...well...to drive the girls to volleyball practice, that is.  :)  Kasey had an obligation with one of the other kids, and Beau was working.  I know I've said it before, but I love living around the corner and getting to spend unexpected times like this with the kidlets.  

Since I knew they would have about 30 minutes at my house before we had to leave, I got plain, folded cards ready for them to write to their great-grandmother.  It has been a long while since we've gotten notes off to her.

When Kasey dropped the girls off, I hurriedly dragged them out back and took a couple of quick photos.  Then I herded them back into the house so they could start writing.  They both finished nice newsy little letters in record time.

After practice, I dropped them off at home, and then I came home and printed out the photos and attached them to the front of their respective cards.  Carey's mom loves getting their letters, and she loves photographs.

They will be in tomorrow's mail.   This is possibly the most productive thing I've accomplished all week.
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Sunday, September 25, 2016

September 25th, Rudolph Day...


There has been much more than one day of Christmas prep this month.  Lots of time has been spent in the 'Christmas closet' rearranging as I have been working on an article on holiday organization and taking photographs.  Also since Kasey and I are having a garage sale next weekend, I wanted to weed through the decorations and see if anything could be sold or donated.  I am so happy to have everything nicely categorized, packed, and put away.  I don't dread the decoration explosion when it's time to open the storage boxes this year.

My Rudolph Day plan for this month was to begin working on our Christmas letter.  Since I found myself wide awake at midnight...technically the 25th...I got a good start on the letter, and will just need to update it some as it gets closer to time to mail it.  I don't think I got cards or letters mailed last year, so it feels kind of good to get this head start on it for this year.
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Friday, September 23, 2016

Frugal Friday File, week 38...


Successes:
1.  I've been brewing iced tea.  Carey started drinking it too, which means he's drinking less Mt. Dew.

2.  Had a nice payday for working a full week at the day job and for the article I submitted awhile back.  Just turned in another article yesterday.

3.  Moved an antique cabinet, 3 swivel bar stools, a vintage medicine cabinet, a door, a chair, and a couple of other pieces out of the rented storage building and into the garage sale.  The sale won't be until Oct 1, so no cash in hand yet, but working on it, and working on the day we won't be paying for storage!

4.  Cooking at home when I don't want to.

5.  Library books.

Keep Tryings:
Hobby expenses.

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  *barbecue
Sunday:  Sunday family dinner at Kasey's
Monday:  sausage, baked sweet potatoes, corn pudding
Tuesday:  smothered pork chops, potatoes, broccoli
Wednesday:  turkey (breast & drumsticks), wild rice, green beans, cranberry sauce
Thursday:  King Ranch Casserole
Friday:  fried rice

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)
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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

What I'm reading Wednesday...

Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson

Mental illness is a serious medical and social issue.  Jenny Lawson shares her struggles with honesty, and copes with hilarity.  

I was laughing out loud at 2:00 a.m. when I read about her antics with the taxidermied raccoon.  
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Monday, September 19, 2016

Shiver me timbers...

Here it is 11:35 p.m. on September 19th, and I forgot it was Talk Like A Pirate Day!  I may have to walk the plank. 

I saw a movie about pirates once.  It was rated Arrrrrr.  :)
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Friday, September 16, 2016

Frugal Friday File, week 37...


Successes:
1. Picked up a loaf of bread (the brand that my husband likes) while I was at Dollar Tree for their standard $1 price (every item in the store is $1).  The same loaf of bread at our regular grocery store goes for $2.88


2.   While I was in the bargain section at Target, I admired this cute little puffy dog coat that would have been a perfect fit and look for Rudy.  It was $3.  I put it back, and will instead make him a coat out of an old sweatshirt I have in the closet...and I won't be out anything if he tears it to shreds.

3.  Thought about purchasing a new fancy planner while they were on sale this week, but after looking at them, I figured if it ain't broke, why fix it?  My checkbook-sized 2-year planners work perfectly for me, and they fit inside my wallet.  Found one for $1.

4.  Almost let a bill's due date slip past me.  Remembered it very late on the due date.  Luckily it's one that gets credited instantly when paid online.  Saved me about a $25 late fee.


5.  I ran to the store to pick up a couple of things.  I happened to notice the containers above in the produce section, and I stopped to skim the label.  For $1.50 you get 5.2 ounces of potato with some oil and spices that you take home and zap in the microwave.  Really?  

For $2.50 I bought a 3 pound bag of potatoes...came home and washed, oiled, spiced, and roasted...fresher, home cooked, and even adding in the cost of the small amount of olive oil and spices from my cupboard and the energy to roast them, I figure it came out to less than 35¢ per 5.2 ounce serving rather than the $1.50 on those crazy over-packaged Take &Shake 'potatoes.'

6.  I've been seeing Snapple Peach Tea in store displays lately.  They must be trying to reduce the summer stock.  I really like Snapple Peach Tea.  So far I have been able to pass it by, knowing that I have peach-ginger tea bags at home, and when I make my own, I can have it without sugar or sweetener as I prefer.

Keep Tryings:
I've made a few impulse purchases lately.  Perhaps more than a few.

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  *pizza
Sunday:  leftovers
Monday:  goulash
Tuesday:  leftovers
Wednesday:  Sweet & Sour meatballs with rice and broccoli
Thursday:  Spring salad w/mixed berries, walnuts, salmon fillet, homemade honey/Dijon
Friday:  Baked chicken breasts, roasted red potatoes, salad

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)
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Monday, September 12, 2016

Making it Monday...


The weather has not really cooled off much if any, but I am getting eager for a change in recipes.  Tonight I had all the ingredients to make goulash.  Not true goulash, but the kind that my Mid-Western-raised mom used to make.  Yummy and filling.  It fed us tonight, and there are two servings in the freezer for Carey's work lunches, and a serving in the fridge for tomorrow.

We had Quilting at the Library today.  I went but didn't take my machine (back still iffy, and didn't want to be lifting it).  I took a box of what I thought was hand-piecing, but it wasn't, so I just stayed to visit for awhile.

I have SO much to do...have scratched off only one (1!) chore off this week's to-do list.
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Friday, September 9, 2016

Frugal Friday File, week 36...


Successes:
1.  Shopped on Monday for mostly household goods like laundry detergent, toilet paper, paper towels, but also for some pantry staples that I am out of.  Saved about 15% of total bill by using digital store coupons and some store coupons that were available near items.  Still kind of depressing as it seemed like a big hit to the wallet.  Looking forward to the day that Rudy is completely house trained and I can go back to my habit of rarely using paper towels.

2.  Was making Greek Tortellini Salad for supper Thursday, but was out of cucumber and it is kind of an integral ingredient.  Before heading to the store miles away, I called Kasey (in the neighborhood) to see if she had a spare.  She did, and when I got there to pick it up, their supper was ready and they invited me to stay.  (Okay, so I kind of said how good it looked and hinted broadly.)  Score!  The pasta salad will be fabulous after marinating overnight.

3.  Meeting a friend for lunch today.  I will be ordering water with lemon...free as opposed to $2 or more for iced tea.  Takes a little of the sting out of the overall check.

4.  Made sure to pick up dog food last weekend while they were offering a $5 coupon on next visit.

5.  Put off haircut...again.

Keep Tryings:
This was a difficult week.  I felt very much the spendthrift.  A full-price Kindle book, some clothing ordered, the vet visit for Rudy and chiropractor visit for Carey and I, and I booked a reflexology session for next week.  I just have to remind myself that this is not a normal week.  Next week I will do better.

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  *pizza
Sunday:  Sunday family dinner at Kasey's
Monday:  leftover pizza and salad
Tuesday:  *burgers
Wednesday:  Chicken Stuffing Casserole
Thursday:  Greek Tortellini Salad
Friday:  leftovers

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)
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Grandparents Day...

Today was Grandparents Day at the elementary school with Chloe.  I woke up to a tremendous backache, but no way was I going to miss this program.  Took a muscle relaxer and waddled out the door.  

Chloe took pity on me and didn't make me stand in line to take a photo against their backdrop, so we took a selfie and I told her I would edit in the occasion.
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Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Seven random thoughts on the 7th...

1.  Made another visit to the chiropractor today for my shoulder.  It is helping, but it is not perfect.

2.  I am trying a new recipe for dinner tonight.  

3.  Rudy was neutered and chipped yesterday.  The surgery did not slow him down in the least.

4.  I am meeting an old friend for lunch on Friday.  We didn't know each other well when our lives took different paths, but we liked each other and had similar interests.  The other day, she found my email address on a handmade item I had given her, and she decided to try it.  I am so happy that my email is still the same!  We seem to be back on a similar path, and we live closer together than we used to.  I hope we click again!

5.  Friday is Grandparent's Day at Chloe's school.  It's the last one I'll get to celebrate with an elementary school program.  ...sigh...

6.  Worked all last week and yesterday.  Glad to do it, and glad it's done.  

7.  Getting ready for a garage sale at the end of the month.  So far my preparation consists of making lists of things to include.  The next seven days I should have a chance to make some actual progress.
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What I'm reading Wednesday...


I didn't turn the channel today, so my husband's favorite CNBC was still on this afternoon when Closing Bell anchor Bill Griffeth was talking about his book.  I went to the CNBC website to read a sample of the book.  I am intrigued.

I rarely pay full price for a book, but I wanted to start reading this right now.

Mr. Griffeth has spent decades researching his genealogy and has written a previous book about his results.  His cousin, also an avid genealogist, asked him to take a DNA test to dig even deeper into their family history.  The results showed that they could not be related, and changed everything the author thought he knew about his family.
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Sunday, September 4, 2016

Sunday family dinner...

As we were playing 5 Second Rule after dinner tonight at Kasey's, we had a heavy rain shower.  From the windows we noticed this rainbow, and I stepped out the front door to snap a picture and heard Kasey say, "Oh man!  Why couldn't it be at the end of my driveway?"  LOL  The driveway on the left belongs to their next-door neighbors.  


Except for cropping, this is straight out of the camera.  I have never been able to actually see the end of a rainbow this close and unobscured by trees or hills.  I'm thinkin' there should definitely have been a pot of gold there!
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Friday, September 2, 2016

Frugal Friday File, week 35...


Successes:
1.  Kindle Daily Deal had a book I was interested in for just $1.99, but I checked the library website, and they have the same ebook to borrow for free.

2.  I worked five days this week, and came home for lunch every day.  Taking my lunch would have saved gas, but I needed the mental break in the day, and Rudy needed to be let out.

3.  Ordered something online this week, but at least I remembered to check Retail-Me-Not first and found a code for 25% off my order.

4.  The start of school means the start of school fundraising.  Chloe's school fundraiser was the first out of the gate, and it offers over-priced magazines and pretty much useless junk.  I subscribed to a quilting magazine which I could well have done without.  Not finding anything else to waste $ or space on, I noticed that there was an option to order a gift card that goes directly to your child's teacher for classroom supplies.  Still not frugal, but won't be gathering dust around here, and it's tax deductible as a donation.

5.  Put off a haircut again.

Keep Tryings:
I am feeling the pinch, and I only foresee expenses ahead.  Carey and I both have been suffering with really painful left shoulders.  I got some relief when I started going to a new chiropractor, so I made Carey start going too.  We are both still going at least weekly, and it is not cheap, but... aaaaahhhhh... being able to sleep without waking up many times a night from aching pain is so wonderful.  Rudy is being neutered next week...cha-ching.  So many other unavoidable expenses lately: car insurance, life insurance, house insurance.  Sensing a theme?

Frugal From the Kitchen This Week:
Saturday:  leftovers
Sunday:  Sunday family dinner at Kasey's
Monday:  *barbecue
Tuesday:  leftovers
Wednesday:  roast, carrots, rice
Thursday:  *Tex-Mex
Friday:  spaghetti and garlic bread

(*not-frugal takeout or dinner out)
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