Today’s post takes inspiration from some of my other favorite blogs: The Non-Consumer Advocate and Notes from the Frugal Trenches. Both blogs feature regular posts which list those small but important ways in which they made their pennies stretch recently (Frugal Trenches’ “How We Saved Money This Week” and Non-Consumer’s “Five Frugal Things“).
So now its my turn to share some ways that I have beenfrugal these past couple of weeks. My children and I have all been sick over the past two weeks, so just not being able to get out much was a big saver in and of itself. But here are some of the specific ways we saved money while being mostly home-bound:
- I unearthed the leftover turkey carcass from Thanksgiving from the bottom of the freezer to make turkey soup. In the soup I used my own homegrown onions and carrots, so I only had to buy noodles and celery. I served the soup with homemade garlic breadsticks (featuring our homegrown garlic, of course). It fed the 4 of us, another family of 3 we invited over for dinner, with leftovers for about 4-5 more lunches. The total cost for this mountain of food was about $5.
- I cleaned the utility room, which was a total disaster area. This saved us money in two ways. First, it enabled my husband to be able to brew a batch of beer this last weekend. It saves us over $50 every time he brews a 10 gallon batch at home. Second, my grow-light table is in the utility room. Once it was cleared off, I could start my first round of seeds for 2015’s garden. I mostly started onions, but I also did a few cold hardy greens and some basil, because if I’m going to have to lights on anyway, I might as well put something else under there, right? Three dollars in onion seeds should produce about 75 onions, enough for us for a year. The potting soil was leftover from last year.
- I used a discount coupon book (my husband got for free through work) to get a pack of free AAA batteries. I also got a watch battery and a car key clicker battery replaced for 3.99 each with an offer in the book. (Actually, having the key clicker fixed so I can unlock the car doors easily while walking across busy parking lots with young kids is priceless.)
- I used the same discount book to get a free embroidery kit from a local sewing shop. Its just something fun and easy for me to do while I’m hanging out with the kids. I picked a cat scene and I will give it to my daughter when it’s done.
- I requested some books from my library that I want to read, all from the convenience of my couch. I’l have to wait a few weeks before they’re available, but they’ll be free, so I don’t mind. Also related, I had my husband drop off some nearly overdue books on his way to work, to avoid late fees.
- I cut my husband’s and my children’s hair. The scissors and clippers paid for themselves after the first 3-4 haircuts, so every time I cut hair for the entire family, I am saving another $40 or so.