Saturday, July 1, 2017
Frugal Friday: Money Saving Weekly Recap (and Garden Update)
This week could be symbolized by a coffee pot full of coffee like the one seen up top that I brewed up this morning. We had two appointments this week, the allergist and the dentist for the kids, on top of summer school, running multiple errands and other things. And then Thursday night the son decided not to sleep. At all. He took a half an hour nap from 11:00 to 11:30 at night. I, dumbly, thought he was down for the night and so I got some house work done before going to bed myself. I never got there. Clark, bless him, actually got home from work, slept for three hours and then went with us to the dentist as I was pretty certain there was no way I was up to driving. Bright side, no cavities! That's always a relief. The allergy shot got done with minimal drama, which was good as well. But yeah, between the running and the son not sleeping well BEFORE his stint of 24 hours on 1/2 an hour of sleep, I was just beyond exhausted yesterday and today, even though I got seven hours of sleep last night (the husband woke me up at seven and I couldn't get back to sleep) I'm still really really tired. Today I spent just getting as much laundry caught up as possible and getting my kitchen cleaned and things. I ran into a bag of coconut in the pantry today that I looked the date and realized it needed to be used up, so I ended up making coconut lemon bars (it was a recipe on the back of the coconut bag, but instead of a coconut crust thing they wanted you to make, I made a graham cracker crust instead...it turned out pretty yummy!) and I spent most of the day just juggling housework while also keeping up with the son unit. I can't wait till he crashes (please let him crash) for the night so I can hopefully get a decent amount of sleep tonight. I can hope anyway.
But, yeah, in between everything that happened this week, believe it or not I was able to get some frugal things done!
1. Grocery shopping went...well it went this week, although really I did do well with what I spent, but I just feel bad that I spent so much. I ended up spending way more than I wanted to, but we were out of so many things because my son is going through an "eat all food and drink all preferred liquids" phase on top of me running out of garbage bags and a few other pretty spendy side line items. I did pass on getting dish washing detergent and rinse aid, even though I was out of both, because I realized that I had bottles of dish soap still under the sink and replenishing the dish washing detergent and rinse aid would be adding about 15.00 onto my shopping bill and that I just wasn't going to do right now (home made stuff just doesn't work with our water). Oddly enough, even though I spent about two times what I have been spending, I still spent less than my old grocery budget used to be for one week (which this was for two weeks that I was shopping for) and I ended up with a good load of groceries. I even impressed my husband with how much I'd gotten on so little.
I was able to massively stack coupons this week with personalized prices or sale prices stacked with coupons. Carrs had Hefty freezer or storage slider bags on sale for 1.49 each with a coupon you could either clip from the ad or load onto your card. I loaded it on my card and also was able to load a coupon for 1.00/2 for the bags and had a paper coupon for one dollar off another two. So, all totaled I got four boxes of Hefty freezer bags (quart sized as they didn't carry the gallon ones in a smaller count size so they weren't on sale...I know weird) for .99 each. That'll last me quite a while :).
I also got a package of pork chops, six total, for 3.54 as they were reduced 50% off.
2. When we checked out at the grocery store, I ended up going over the minimum to get four times the gas rewards than normal (the minimum on my personalized price this week was 75.00). So my husband was able to fill up his truck for work for about ten dollars less than he normally would have. Woohoo for that!
3. Also when I checked out at the store a coupon printed off for a free pint of ice cream. I had to run back into the store for my daughter to use the bathroom (as we were running to pick up my son from school RIGHT after shopping due to the way the schedule worked out), so we ran and redeemed the coupon for the ice cream while we were in the store. We got the last pint of chocolate (my daughter was thrilled *laugh*.
4. Instead of buying hot dogs at the store for Fourth of July, I went home after shopping and dug around in my freezer hoping I'd find a package or two of hot dogs. I found some! So, yeah for not spending money on something I didn't need to buy!
5. When I ran out of paper towels upstairs, I decided I wasn't going to get another roll out of the few I had left to put upstairs. Instead I pulled out the cloth napkins, pulled out a bunch of dish rags and things and told my family what to grab for what job. I am reserving what is left of the paper towels for cat accidents (I'm sorry, but it's a personal thing...I just will NOT touch that stuff unless I'm throwing away the thing that touched it...too gross for me). So far, so good. It works when you are the only one who really knows where the paper towels are to help control paper towel usage around the home *laugh*.
6. My mom gave me a lecture about not taking care of myself and sent me some new sneakers. I was really touched by the gesture and really thrilled to get the new sneakers (thanks, mom!).
7. I mended yet MORE holes in comforters this week. And I've got to rebuild my son's favorite comforter here yet this weekend somehow (it's kind of mends on top of mends, but he loves the thing).
9. Turns out one of the bugs that we are infested with this summer is ticks. Yes, fellow local Alaskans reading this...ticks! People on some of my farming groups are showing pictures of the squirrels and the shrews and things that they are catching in traps and they are severely infested with squirrel ticks. Our cat Prince has been having a field day this summer killing vermin indiscriminately, which was great, until he came home with two ticks this last week. Seriously, it took me a few minutes to recognize a tick when I saw one as they are NOT something I've had to deal with since moving up here. Between that and a severe bear problem that we're having this year all over the state (we've had two people in the state mauled to death by bears in the last month and a bear broke through a boy's bedroom window in Anchorage this week...we have a grizzly sighted less than five minutes from my house as well, so yeah...not a fun summer to be out camping or anything), the cats are under house arrest for now. They aren't happy about it and are stalking me on a regular basis.
Not buying it? I'll prove it to you!
In short, they are driving me nuts. But, it's the cheapest way to stop insect infestation and the best way to keep them out of harm's way for the time being.
As for the garden update...
Well the beans are growing despite something trying to eat the really young shoots as they come out of the ground. The shoots, once they reach a certain height or maturity, whatever it is seems to leave them alone, so I'm hoping to get enough beans to survive to make a decent amount of beans later on.
The peas are starting to flower and are growing like mad still.
The lettuce, despite having been heavily harvested this week is almost ready to harvest again. Which is one of the reasons I LOVE growing lettuce in the garden. It recoups fast!
I harvested a bunch of dill and basil from the Aerogarden this week. The parsley is growing, but still WAY far behind the other two plants. I'm really impressed with how fast and prolifically the dill grows in the hydroponics garden. I'm harvesting it about once every other day so it doesn't burn itself on the growth light it grows so fast. It's impressive!
And the weather report is calling for more rain. We're up to about five sunny days this summer so far. Kind of depressing and bad on the energy levels for sure.
And there you are folks. Some of my frugal adventures this week. How did you do?