Saturday, November 28, 2015
Frugal Friday: Money Saving Weekly Recap
This week I really felt like a truck named Desolation hit me and threw me into two carnival trains that were on a collision course and they were carrying loads of worries on one end and loads of depression on the other end. By the time the inevitable Richard Scary type of collision had occurred, I didn't know which way was up and just ended up trying to find the pieces of myself enough to function.
Basically we have no money, problems are abounding in trying to get money, bills are due and once paid I'm trying to figure out how to stagger along to make sure we have things like gas money until said problems work themselves out. I looked for a job for myself, but can't find anything that would make us enough money to support the family (that four year marketing and business admin degree and all of those years of being an office manager REALLY seem to be paying off...sorry sarcasm gets me through sometimes), which is what I'd need to do as we need one parent at home to take my son to therapy and school. I am doing everything I can think of, including looking around to find enough things to sell to open an Etsy shop so at least I could make enough money for gas and things. I am praying vehemently for a blinding flash from the beyond on what to do, but so far I'm not having a lot of luck in that area.
It didn't help that I had sick kids home on Monday. Over the weekend the kids and husband developed a cold that hit hard and fast and Monday no one but me was feeling that great. My son got over the cold in normal order and so did my husband, but my daughter kept having this wet cough that worried her father and I. Tuesday the kids had a snow day, which was good because they both needed the rest. Wednesday both kids were in school for the entire day. We had the nurse check out my daughter's ears, which she complained hurt, and he didn't see any infection and said they were a little plugged but that was all.
Thursday rolls around and my daughter woke up with her ear hurting her pretty good, but we were hoping it was just clogged, put some things in her ear to break up ear wax and by the end of the day she acted like she was maybe feeling a bit better (no where near normal, though).
And then yesterday she woke up and it was obvious she was going to a doctor. Her cough had worsened by a lot, both of her ears were killing her, she was running a fever and she just sat and cried she felt so miserable. My husband ended up at the ER with her since every place I called had taken a long weekend for Thanksgiving. Final diagnosis: Upper respiratory infection with a double ear infection on top of it.
She's now on copious amounts of antibiotics and lots of cuddles, but at least she's finally starting to act normal for the first time in nearly a week. She's not been that sick and worried us that bad in a few years.
At any rate, I did, in the middle of "mind blurring tornado of worrying events" manage to save money this week, so let's get to that and brighten up this dim hall shall we?
1. I went to the store on Wednesday with a set budget in mind and stuck to it hard. I was able to get the bare minimum of groceries for next week with a little leeway built in for things like milk and drinks for my son during the week and still came in 100.00 under my normal grocery budget (which isn't easy when your son subsists on processed foods let me tell ya).
2. I got a few Christmas gifts done this week. I'm no longer on schedule to be done by the end of November with everything that has happened the last two or three weeks (plumbing problems, sickness and other things oh my), but I'm hoping to get the rest of my gifts done within the first week of December. My goal is ultimately to get all the gifts done before Christmas break as when my son is home it is SO much harder to get sewing projects accomplished without sacrificing up my house in offering to him to destroy as I turn my back on him for 20 minutes at a time.
3. When I went shopping I found some decorative gourds marked down to 1.00 and I used them as a centerpiece on my Thanksgiving table. I'm trying to find a good place in my house today to see if I can possibly dry them so that I can use them for decorations in coming years as well. Biggest problem is finding a well ventilated place for them to dry where I won't forget about them and such.
4. For Thanksgiving, instead of buying a new bag of red potatoes for one of the dishes my husband really wanted me to make, I pulled out the 1/2 bag of potatoes I had left from earlier in the year. Some of them were kind of past their prime, but I sat and took the extra time, cut out all of the bad spots and salvaged every bit I could. And I got enough potatoes to finish the dish (had to add a bit of extra cheese to cover some thin spots in the dish, but it worked).
5. When making the turkey this year, I brined the turkey neck right along with the turkey and baked it in the same roasting pan. I ate the turkey neck as part of my Thanksgiving portion. I had gotten into the habit of throwing the turkey neck away, but doing it this way, I'll definitely be doing that in the future as it was really tasty.
6. I belong to an organization called, "Smiley 360" which is a product testing outfit (I definitely can recommend them to you all as they are legit). I got a notice that my latest "mission" shipped, so that is more free things I'll be getting in the mail. This mission was really easy to fulfill the requirements for as well, which was a double benefit as not only did it save me money, it saved me time.
7. Even though things were looking bleak and I fought tears a lot the last three days, while at the store yesterday I heard the familiar ringing of the bell. Since I was a child I've always donated to the Salvation Army with their bell ringers. I dug around in my pocket, pulled out all the change I could find and donated it all. It did make me feel a little bit better and recovered some of my holiday spirit.
8. My husband won a contest on a forum he belongs to (it's a guys and their tools type of thing) and received some free tools in the mail as his contest winnings. It made him happy to receive the prize, which made me happy as he's been kind of miserable lately too.
9. We've been enjoying unseasonably warm temperatures the last few days. While it's melted the snow at rapid rates (much to the disappointment of the children) it has been saving me money on my heating bill, so I'm not complaining.
10. I mended a hole in my son's jacket pocket and a couple of socks this week.
And there you are folks. Some of the ways we saved money this week. How did you do?