Every Day

Frugal Things We Have Done

These are some of the frugal things we have done the last few months that I haven’t told you about before:

– We had a beautiful flowering plant put in on the south side of the house. It really did not do well. I was sure it was dead. But Hubby insisted on moving it to a shady spot to see if he could revive it. Take a look at the picture above and see how well it is doing now.

– Here in New York, there is a rebate program on your school taxes where they send a check back to you for a certain percentage of your Star Exemption based on your income. They have 4 income tiers. The less you make in income, the more your rebate check is. We got a check in the mail for approximately $256. It was very tempting to cash and spend. However, we are depositing it in our investment account rather than mindlessly frittering it away. 

– Over the summer, I have done major decluttering especially in our basement. I can now find everything in storage when I need it. Everything that I really want to keep has been put in bins and labeled. Some of these things are only used once or twice a year and I do not want them taking up residence in my kitchen cupboards. They save me money when I do use them. We also have a stockpile of lined paper pads, computer paper, office supplies, business envelopes, etc. that I purchased in bulk at dirt cheap prices. That has all been organized and labeled. I have also gone through our Christmas decorations and weeded out a lot that we don’t use. Some I am going to gift to my children. Mostly things that they made me over the years.

– My stockpile is now perfectly organized with all of the early expiration dates in the front. When I put anything down there now, they go in the back. Even Hubby can go down there and find what he is looking for.

– I am giving away most of my frugality books. My sister was reading one while she was here so I gave it to her to take home. My DIL took quite a few. My kids know that if they want more they can just take them while they are here. Rather than sell them for a few cents on the dollar, it is PRICELESS to me that my family will enjoy reading and learning from them. They have been a great source of reference for me over the years. Now they can benefit my children. 

– Gifting the books will also give me more shelf space for stockpiling.    

– I now only use the ecoegg to clean my laundry. No laundry detergent! If something has a stain on it, I  will spot treat it.  

– This week I will be making a small amount of homemade laundry detergent to use for hand washables only. I will post the recipe it when it is done.

– I have been staying way under budget on food all summer and now in September I am staying under my challenge budget. 

– We have sprayed the foundation of the house for bugs every few weeks using cheap bug spray that I bought in bulk at Walmart. This has killed all the ants around our patio and kept spiders and other bugs out of our garage and basement. Some of our neighbors are paying a fortune to have their homes done professionally. 

– Even though my credit card company said they doubted that I would get my money back from Zaycon since the claim had to be within 60 days and it wasn’t, they decided after investigation to credit my credit card back the full amount. However, if in the next 60 days Zaycon reverses it,they will charge it back to me again. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

– Every few years, I do a full price check at all of my food stores on most of the items I buy every month. I did this over the summer and have added prices to my list so that I am now up to date with my prices. I  know which store has the best prices on the groceries I need. This makes it so much easier to make my lists.

– I collected the pine cones from our Spruce trees in the backyard so that I can use them for fire starters in our backyard fireplace. As soon as the weather turns cooler, we will be enjoying that a lot. We are still using wood that was leftover from when all the homes were built in here. As soon as they start building the new section of our neighborhood, I will be scrounging wood scraps again from the dumpster. 

– I made roasted diced potatoes from fresh yesterday morning to give a little variety to our family breakfasts. It seems like I always make hash browns.

– I love Naturalizer flat casual shoes for everyday wear. The pair I purchased 17 years ago finally fell apart this week. I definitely got my money’s worth. They were so comfortable that I had to get 2 new pair- one in black and one in navy. They were $59.99 each. But I did find a coupon code, got free shipping, and I will get $5.00 back from Ebates. The coupon code was good for 20% off when you bought two pair so that was a reduction of $24.00. If they each last me as long as the shoes I am throwing out, it is a great purchase. 

– My daughter-in-law e-mailed us a picture of my granddaughter in her school uniform this week. The picture was just beautiful. So I asked Hubby to make an 8X10 on our photo printer. He did and it is now sitting in a frame on the shelf in our great room. He also made some wallet sizes. The photo paper we are using I got for just pennies after a sale and rebates when we lived in Arizona. I bought so much that we still have many packages of it left.

– And lastly, there is one frugal thing that we are going to be doing very soon. Our brand new YMCA in our little town is opening the beginning of October. Hubby and I decided a long time ago that when it opened we would join so that we could use the pools, sauna, steam room, track, and any exercise equipment they might have. They are running a special that if you sign up as a charter member before October 1st, they waive the $40. per person membership fee. You can bet we will be signed up before then because it will save us $80. Using the facility will be adding $ 37.00 to our monthly bills for the two of us. We get this low price because we are seniors. It is well worth it.

What have you been doing frugally? Feel free to leave a comment.

6 replies on “Frugal Things We Have Done”

The only major frugal thing I have done lately is call our cable company to try to get our bill lowered. Turns out our particular package is no longer even offered, so I was able to get our bill lowered by $31 per month, with faster internet speed. Because this is a recurring expense, the savings will add up. If you don't make these calls, the company is sure not going to reduce your bills! Sherri

Hi Liz, this is Chris. I went over my grocery challenge this week by $20. It was because of 2 things: first of all, I saw a deal on Dove soap and stockpiled it for $8 for 11 bars. This is the soap hubby uses, and I hadn't seen a good deal on it here for a long time, so I got some. The second reason was that we went to a tail gate party on Sat. and they had a wing contest. Hubby wanted to make 2 different kinds of wings in his smoker, so $12 was spent on 2 bags of wings. I have never bought wings before, but these were a bag of 2.5 lb for 5.99 on sale at Kroger. Maybe you or some of your readers will know if that is a decent price or not. He is eating the leftovers in his lunch this week. He got 4th place in the contest, which is not bad for a first effort.

I am so happy to hear that you and your hubby are going to join the Y where you live. I love our Y here. They offer many free exercise classes. I have taken Silver Sneakers and Enhance Fitness if you will have them available. They are both good, but I go regularly and like Enhance Fitness the best. It is an anti arthritis and anti fall class. It is also the class you go to first after you have surgery and your dr. says you can exercise again. You got a great price on the membership, I just renewed ours and it was $82x.00 for the year. We are not retired yet, and not old enough for the senior discount, so pay full price. It is worth it, though, we have gotten so much good from it. They also offer free sessions when you first join with trainers, so you can learn how to use the exercise equipment if you want to use it.

Hi Chris,

Sometimes you can't avoid going over when you see good deals that you will use. And I can't think of anything better than wings to go over either. That is a great price for them. Congrats to Hubby on the fourth place win.

I am glad that you love your Y. Thanks for the tips on the programs.

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