Saturday, February 4, 2017
Frugal Friday: Money Saving Weekly Recap
Believe it or not, I do have shopping goals this month, but they are different than normal shopping goals. As most of you know, my son has terrible eczema. It cycles constantly, cracking his hands and his feet open more than anywhere, but it breaks out all over his body pretty constantly. Well, remember that party I went to a friend of mine a couple of months ago and said that I couldn't afford the products? Well, she immediately fell in love with the products and gave me some for a Christmas gift. I was dubious as to how well they'd do, honestly, but I quickly became a lover of the products myself and have found myself using them constantly. I found that by using the products you can eliminate cleaners pretty much from your home (they are high quality microfiber that allows you to clean your house pretty much with water only) and the cleaners they do sell are highly concentrated and free of a TON of chemical irritants that my son has shown himself sensitive to. After researching the products more and more, I became more and more convinced that this was something I really wanted to try to help my son out. So, I am taking some money out of the tax return to buy some products and give them a long term test for him. Trust me, this eczema thing has been a continuing journey over the years, but if I can find things that'll help him I'd gladly bankrupt myself doing it (yay for a good tax return!).
Also, while researching what was new and upcoming in the eczema lotion recommendations from different sites I'm subscribed to, I once again, found myself on Amazon and reading a TON of negative reviews on the "doctor recommended" lotions the sites recommended, people who had eczema complaining how badly they irritated their eczema and how it didn't help them much at all. While looking at that, however, I ran across a cream that people, real people, who suffer from eczema, a lot of them as bad as my son, swore by and recommended highly for putting their eczema into remission. I ordered some, even though it hurt to do it on the checkbook (luckily I was able to use a few Amazon gift cards to help stave off deep hurting from Swagbucks and things). I'm hoping between the cleaning and laundry products and getting all the chemical irritants out of the house as much as I can and getting the eczema cream (and some after bath oil and stuff) that maybe we'll see some improvement in my little man. I might not be able to cure his autism to make his ability to cope with his environment easier, but if I can at least alleviate his eczema...at least I'm helping him somehow.
To help pay for these things, I decided that it was worthwhile to start figuring out ways to pay for them, so some of those are on this week's list. So, here we go!
1. To help pay for part of my products order, I decided to sell my thermal cooker (seen up top). I offered it first to family and a family member is going to buy it off of me. My husband was trying to convince me to keep it because it was cool and for fuel conservation and things, but since the stone has to be heated (via fuel) for 30 minutes and the food has to be heated as well before you put it into the cooker...we just don't do enough camping to justify the room it takes up and things as a "just in case" type of an item. So, I decided it could go.
2. I sold a few handkerchiefs that I had embroidered to a friend of mine who wanted to buy them for her daughter for Christmas. Since I was doing them for fun, I had no problem selling them. I sold them to her for 10.00 for two of them and that too went into my "pay for products" fund (they were simple with a flower on a corner and then some pink edging straight stitch. I took a picture, but it didn't turn out).
I'm probably going to be selling more embroidery here in the future just to help, hopefully, to make some extra money. I'm really tired of being dead broke all the time and would love to be able to make a little bit of money on the side to help alleviate the situation.
3. With my husband working nights, I quickly lost motivation to stick to the menu plan while he was gone...I was just too tired and in too much pain and we had a ton of leftover potato soup to eat, so I just ate that for dinner, went with something easy for my kids for dinner and called it good. My husband even took leftover soup to work for dinner a few nights (yes, it made THAT much soup *laugh*).
4. I got through watching "Edwardian Farm" on You Tube (it is kind of like "Wartime Farm" by the way to the person who asked, but it's Alex, Ruth and Peter in the Edwardian period in England), but was still missing two parts on the series that just plain weren't available anywhere to watch. Luckily, I had some video credits available from Amazon from some promotion that I didn't know about, so I used that credit to download the two episodes I couldn't find anywhere else (I even have a little bit left of the 5.00 credit).
I then went and watched the series, "Victorian Pharmacy" right afterwards, which I found utterly fascinating and made me REALLY grateful for modern medicine, but also came away with a great respect for the pharmacies of old. One of the cool things I found while watching it though was that you could make your own custard powder like Bird's (which I found I do like after buying some a long while ago to try out on some WWII era British recipes). I ordered some from Amazon a while back and have been carefully using it only when I absolutely need to as it wasn't cheap to buy, so when I found out how easy it was to make (it doesn't even contain eggs), I looked up a recipe and am going to try my hand at making some this week. Always cool to find something new to try.
5. I read a couple of more free books on my Kindle from Amazon. I haven't found anything that blows my mind yet, but I still am having fun looking.
6. I had a book I'd been wanting to read for a while "The Family Save All" that Ruth mentions in "Victorian Farm" quite a bit and it wasn't exactly cheap on Amazon, but I found that it was available on Google books for free! So, I've been reading through it slowly but surely and am really enjoying it.
7. I started working on the next couple of weeks of menu plans for after next week. Anything I didn't make this week I'm just going to roll over onto the coming weeks of menus to save myself time and energy. I think it'll work out well doing that :).
8. I used up items from the pantry and freezer this week, and did manage to take a quick pantry inventory and found that so far items in the pantry and freezer are holding up well so far. I'm feeling pretty good about that. I think I'm getting closer to dialing in how much of certain items we'll need to make it through the winter or close to.
9. I started making a list of things I want to make sure to buy for the yard and garden in the way of seeds and things and hope that I'll be able to pick up some of them. This year my big purchase I'm hoping to make is a couple of honey berry bushes to plant (they are hardy in pretty much every single growing zone). If anyone knows a local Alaskan source where I could buy some of these or somewhere that will ship them up here decently cheap, please let me know!
And there you are folks. My frugal adventures this week. How did you do?