Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Frugal Doings Lately 3/11/15

I just realized that I have not done a Frugal Doings post for quite awhile.  I guess that these things are just so normal for me that I forget that by sharing, it might inspire someone else to try their hand at some of the things we do to save. :)  So here it goes!

~My husband rented a walk behind Skid Steer thing to level out our driveway and fill in the trenches that we had after having to replace our water main line that comes up to our home.  He shopped around for the best deal and found that our local building supply company (that he also used to work for) would rent the machine by the hour and give you free rental of the trailer to haul it.  He ended up paying $86 for the rental, including the cost of the fuel he used in the machine instead of the $250 that other places wanted to charge without the free use of the trailer.

~With the unusually warm weather we have been having, I have found myself once again enjoying hanging out the laundry on the laundry line to dry.

~We have been searching for a laundry detergent that would get that awful sour sweat smell out of my hubby's work clothing and finally found that one of the Ajax products works wonders!  The only problem is that they do not sell it up near us.  However, Big Lots was carrying it so we made a trip down to the valley (an hour away) and stocked up at $5 a bottle.  We only use it for hubby's clothing and each bottle has 80 loads worth.  We bought 5 bottles so that should last us a good long time.

~While we were at Big Lots we also found an 8 pack of flashlights for $10.  My hubby uses flashlights at work since he is a delivery driver for a shipping company and works the graveyard shift.  I also like to have them on hand in my car and in my purse.  Our grandkids think they are wonderful toys and love to play with them so this was a great deal for us.

~We had bought a couch and loveseat awhile back at Salvation Army and they have customer loyalty cards where you get a punch for every $10 you spend.  Once you fill up the card, you get $20 off your purchase.  We had 7 of these cards after our big purchase and have been using them to buy things for us, our kids and our grandkids.  By combining this with sales at the Salvation Army we have been able to get dishes, movies, clothing, books, toys, and even a gorgeous real silver and onyx ring for free.

~I have been busy baking homemade bread and cooking mainly from scratch.  This helps keep our food costs way down.

~I love iced tea and have found that I can get the 100 bags of Green Tea packages at the Dollar Tree.  I use 4 tea bags per 2 quart pitcher.  They also carry the fruit flavored teas that I love.

~I buy many of my baking supplies, dried herbs and seasonings from the bulk bins at Winco.  I can then make custom blends at home reusing the containers that I already have on hand.

~Jeff and I love to watch movies at home and have been finding lots of fun DVDs at the thrift stores.  A typical "date night" for us is popping a big bowl of popcorn (also bought in bulk at Winco) and cuddling up on the couch or in bed to watch a movie.

~There are some shows on TV that I enjoy but we do not get those channels on our DISH plan so I watch them online.

~I am able to get free compost from our town's yard refuse and composting site.  This saves me a ton of money when having to fill my pots to grow things in.

~I started planting the bottoms of my green onions last year in my garden and was so pleased to see that some of them overwintered and are coming up in my garden.  I have a few more that I need to get planted out there now and can see that I will not have to buy green onions for the rest of the Spring and Summer if we do not get another big freeze.

~I've been saving my milk jugs, juice jugs and pop bottles to use as mini green houses and will try my hand at winter seeding.

~I stocked up on garden seeds at the Dollar Tree when they first appeared in the stores because they sell out so quickly!

~It is no secret that I have a serious book addiction. ;)  I love books and enjoy not only shopping for children's books for myself, but also for my grandkids and for my teacher friends.  I recently stumbled upon some of the HUGE classroom books like the one above for .69 and .79 each at the thrift store. Anyone who has ever priced these books know how expensive they are.  I picked up some fun ones for my DIL who is homeschooling our grandsons and for gifts for some of the teachers I work with.  I will frequently take books to school to read to the younger elementary kids and if the book proves to be a huge hit with them, I will try to find another copy to gift to the classroom.

~There have been some great clearance deals lately on gift items so I have been busy restocking my gift closet with things for family and friends.

~We take advantage of the military discount for shipping things overseas to our son Josh through the post office.  If you have a loved one in the military who has an APO address, ask your postmaster for this deal.  They now have special priority mailing boxes just for this.

~I have been cashing in on my points programs that I use, Swagbucks, Disney Movie Rewards, MyPoints, RecycleBank, etc. for free movies, gift cards, magazine subscriptions, etc.

~I just can't praise the library enough for the wonderful selection of free books and movies that you can borrow from them.  Our's also has an ongoing book sale with amazing prices so I can feed that book addiction of mine. ;)

~With the warmer weather, my husband and I have been trying to take our dog out for more walks.  Caesar, our huge and energetic dog, gets so excited when we put our tennis shoes on because he knows there is a walk in store for him and he starts "talking" and dancing up a storm!

~We needed some more railroad ties for a landscaping project and our son Chris has some that he is not using so he is giving them to us.

~Our son Jaysn and his wife Rachel are going to be doing some landscaping of their own at their new home and want to get rid of their roses.  They offered them to us knowing how much I love roses.  We are going to dig them up and replant them here since we had to rip out some of ours when the water main broke.

~I'm looking into other health insurance options for myself.  My husband has his covered through his work but we have to purchase private health insurance for me.  We went through the Washington Health Care Exchange and it has been nothing but a mess for us and so many others.  Our rates have tripled for less coverage and higher deductibles and there have been so many screw ups in our state with the Health Care Exchange sitting on payments and not getting the information to the insurance companies so even though you are paying, you are not officially enrolled and do not have the insurance you have paid for (we went through this during a cancer scare and then there was also a bait and switch scenario on what was covered and what was not that we had to deal with that took months to straighten out) or the latest scandal of them triple billing one month the unfortunate people who have the automatic payment plan set up.  Thank God we did not set that up for our payment plan.

Those are just a few of the things we have been doing lately.  Be blessed and save those pennies...they add up quickly! :D


  1. What a wonderful post. Full of interesting and thrifty things. I love sharing plants and my daughter is moving and I have one little side bed that is going to her new sunny yard.

    1. Barbara, I'm so glad your daughter is going to be receiving some of your plants. I'm sure they will mean a lot to her. :)

  2. Great post and some awesome saving. I always love reading frugal posts.

    1. :) I love reading and learning from these kinds of posts also. :)

  3. Great post about saving money! I also cook from scratch a lot. In fact we only eat out about twice a month and we save so much doing that :)

    1. Rue, I so wish I could say we only ate out a few times a month. It seems like we have been eating out more and more and I know it is taking a toll on the budget. ;)


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