Sunday, August 21, 2016

Frugal Friday: Money Saving Weekly Recap

Sorry this post is late.  Blogger was having issues letting me publish new posts (although, honestly, it could have been my computer...I had to reset my start up protocols again on this thing last night.  Windows...appropriate name as trying to get the blasted thing to open and perform right is a lesson in frustration (anyone who has grown up around old windows will know exactly what I'm talking about *laugh*).

When it came to frugal stuff that happened this week, the most humorous thing that happened involves the pile of pudding pop kits above.

See, one of the things on my pantry stock up list for winter is pudding mix.  I know, I know, some people will want to lecture me on home made pudding being easy and is better for you and such, but here's the thing.  I'm lazy folks.  Especially when making pudding as I like the thickener help with the powdered pudding compared to sitting there for ages waiting for it to thicken and praying I got it right before it separates on me or curdles.  The pudding mix tastes good (really I like Jello too), is easy and it keeps forever in the pantry.  So, yeah, I'll stick with pudding mix.  I love to mix a package of vanilla with a package of chocolate to make a "twist" pudding (just make your chocolate pudding to pie directions as it calls for less liquid, drop by huge spoonfuls on top of the vanilla pudding and then take a butter knife and "cut"  through the mixture back and forth to marble makes a pretty fun dessert :), or make it into pudding pops, or serve it alongside cake and things during the winter months.

I was going to buy some huge cans from the LDS cannery, only to find they don't sell those anymore (and haven't for years I guess...definitely led to an interesting conversation with the cannery people when I called...shows how often I utilize the cannery for things like that), so I figured I'd just have to watch for sales and things on pudding.  I was at the store and was tired and wandering and looked up to see corn syrup (another thing on my list of things I needed) was on reduced for 1/2 off on the shelf tag, so I grabbed some, but then I looked over and hit pay dirt!  The Jello Pudding Pop kits were 1/2 off  too as was several other flavors of pudding (including banana cream, which will help lead to banana pudding for dessert this winter :)!

I got up to the register to check out and the cashier and lady behind me gave me some odd looks when I unloaded the kits onto the belt.  The conversation went something like this.
Cashier:  "Wow, you must REALLY like pudding pops!"

Me:  "Nope, I'm just stocking up on pudding."

*Cashier blinks at me with a blank stare*

Me:  "Right.  Look.  Each of the kits comes with four boxes of pudding."

*Cashier blinks at me again, but the lady behind me is starting to look intrigued*

Me:  "The kits are 3.00 on reduced.  Each of those boxes of pudding normally sell for 1.50 per box."

*Cashier continues to look blank, but the lady behind me gets all excited*

Lady Behind Me:  "I get it!  So, basically you are buying two boxes of pudding and getting two boxes free."

Me:  "And free popsicle molds."

Lady Behind Me:  "Right.  I'll be right back!  Are there any left?"

Me:  "Yeah, I got as many as I could, but I have a bum arm, so I didn't want to climb the shelf too far to get the ones stacked on the back of the shelf."

Lady Behind Me:  "Well, would you like a couple more?  I can get them for you.  I'm six foot tall.  Shelves aren't a problem for me."

Me:  "Nah, I think I'm good."

*Lady goes off quickly and returns in record time with five more pudding pop kits and puts them in with her stuff.  We smile at each other happy in the fact that we got a good deal*
That was a fun shopping trip.  Especially when I was able to use some 1.00/1 Jello Pudding Pop kit peelies I'd gotten in a bulk order of Jello from Amazon a while ago.  Bwahahahahaha!

So, other frugal adventures this week included...

1.  I'm continuing to harvest the last of the peas from my pea plants.  The plants aren't so much succumbing to powdery mildew as they are going down like the Titanic, but the plants were already starting to die before that started, so I'm thinking I'm just seeing the end of the plants for the year.  So far I actually have a couple of beet seedlings and a couple of turnip seedlings that despite the most determined bugs in the universe are somehow still alive.  I'm in wait and see mode at this point as to how they do.

2.  My glasses broke this week, so instead of running to an eye glasses place, which would have been out of my way and kind of a pain to do as I was busy, I stole a nose pad off of my spare pair of glasses and am using that until I can find time to go to an eye glasses place and get my nose pads replaced properly.

3.  I finally consolidated cheese powder into a jar this week.  My son loves Easy Mac cups, but ONLY the uncooked macaroni and the milk/salt powder that they put in the cups.  So I just keep the cheese powder pouches that come with the Easy Mac and put them aside for use later (read:  Shoved them into any available space on a cabinet shelf).  I don't want to say that I ended up opening and dumping about three years worth of cheese powder into that jar, but yeah, I am thinking that's pretty accurate (man I'm cheap *laugh*).  I now have a quart of cheese powder to use to make cheese sauce and things on the fly over the winter and recovered a bunch of room on my cabinet shelf.  And I know it's safe for my son to eat with his peanut allergy, so it was worth saving those packets over the years :).

4.  I reorganized the freezers this week and, of course, found things that had gotten buried and would need to be used pronto.  I used some packages of freezer burned hamburger to make a huge batch of taco meat this week, which we've been eating for lunches and/or dinner on and off.  Thank goodness we like tacos :).

5.  Went to the used store on Wednesday because on Wednesday they have 1/2 off all kids items.  I was able to get my daughter and son a few more pairs of pants for cheap (about 1.00 per pair).

I also found that all of my pants were falling apart at the same time (which I can't figure out why that happens to me, but it does), so I hit the used store Wednesday for that as well and again yesterday.  I was able to find some jeans and some other pants for decently cheap.  I was hoping to find some shirts as well as mine have definitely suffered wear and tear, but I didn't find anything.  Ah well, I'll keep looking.

6.  My husband needed new work shoes and my father-in-law tipped him off to a 1/2 off clearance event at Fred Meyer that was going on through yesterday.  So, we took a trip to Fred Meyer and my husband was able to get a new rain coat and a new pair of sneakers for 40.00 total.  Not bad, especially since the sneakers were name brand.

I also picked up some bras as they were on sale buy one get one half off.  Mine are falling apart.  Like bad.  So, I was happy to take advantage of the sale to get a couple of them decently cheap.  These items came out of the clothing budget, which luckily is still looking pretty healthy since we buy when things are cheap.

Past that the majority of my week was just spent trying to get house work caught up around here, catch naps when I could, see if I could get my arm to not give me problems as much as I could to avoid going to the doctor (it didn't work.  I'm going to make an appointment tomorrow to see what is going on with it) and just trying to get THROUGH the week.  Having a full week the first week of school was just exhausting for all of us, so I was never happier to see the weekend.

So, how about you?  Any frugal adventures to report?


  1. I'm with you on the instant pudding. I have not made homemade pudding yet (other than trying the chocolate rice pudding recipe you posted), so I'm not sure how complicated it is. But having boxes of instant pudding to make up and use for a school lunch item is definitely handy. We don't have those pudding pop kits here in Canada, but it sounds like you really snagged a great deal with them...awesome find, Erika!

    Just a suggestion on the cheese powder, I use it to make cheese popcorn. Remember the microwave popcorn you got at a great deal? Now you can make it extra special and at no extra charge! I used to make popcorn and put some in a baggie for my daughter to take to school sometimes, just for a special treat.

    You found some great deals on clothes for the kids and your husband this week. Really glad you were able to buy a few items for yourself, too. This is am excellent time to find those deals, as they often go on sale for back to school and summer clearance. I've been buying items for my daughter and myself as well lately.

    This week wasn't as frugal, since we went on a mini family vacation. I did note some frugal things we did to save money while on vacation, though. I posted it on The Prudent Homemaker, if you're interested.

    Hope you continue to find more great pantry stock up items, Erika. I'm really look forward to hearing more in future posts. Thanks for sharing your triumphs...and failures sometimes too...and for keeping it real!

    1. Oh wow. I just realized I missed a week of reading Brandy's page. This week was busier than I thought *laugh*. I'll be sure to check out your post there :).

      I LOVE cheese popcorn! Thanks for the suggestion. I never thought of doing that, but it sounds awesome =D.

  2. Wow!! I wish they had those pudding pop kits here. I adored those as a kid.

    Yeah, its too bad for the people who canned themselves about the big #10 cans. What upsets me is here i. VA, our cannery almost never gets bulk. Something about we arent approved or zoned or something from the government. I remember we had just started buying when the government shut down all the canneries. Now, its a little irritating because you get al ost 3 times as much whatever for the same price as buying it prepacked. Our cannery is about 2 hours away, but a single lady works right down the street from it so goes a few times a year. I've had an order I've been wanting, but since its no rush, shes been awfully nice calling each week to see if they have it in bulk. I mostly want the refried beans and black beans, I fell in love with those and the dip it can make.

    Today stumbled across a walmart with massive school supplies clearance (yet the others had none) so I got 1p pairs of 10 cent scissors, a unch of character notebooks for a quarter and pencil bags for 10 cents. Not many of those which id why I went to others. Also found for 10 cents 8 or so 3 subject notebooks that said do you k ow jesus on there. Going to pair it with pens and scarves im making for my primary class.

    Also got some good deals on hot pockets thanks to (my fav site).

    This week pulled up 17 lbs of onions. Not sure where to put them yet. We have no basement. We got a few big ones, and a few small ones but most are ni e sized so Im really happy.

    1. With the onions if you have a dark closet, you can hang them in mesh bags (produce bag type of material) and just hang them from hooks from the ceiling and they should keep for a while. I haven't had a lot of luck with panty hose, which is one that people suggest, but I've heard if you have cheap pantyhose they work better for storing onions than good pantyhose. I'm not sure how true that is, but it might be worth a shot :).

  3. Erika, you are definitely not lazy. You put me to shame with all you do and with such little sleep. Cheryl

  4. Yes, I second what Cheryl said, You are not lazy! I love those pudding pop kits! I need to stop by Kroger today so I might look for them. I personally can't stand homemade pudding. The texture and taste is just not the same. I used to beat myself up for not making things homemade. But I am at a point in my life, like why? It's quicker, taste better and my family will actually eat it so there is no waste. Not saying that I don't make anything homemade but I have let go of the guilt. I am in a season when the time is just not there. I also don't make my own taco seasoning, or Bisquick mix, etc just because I don't. Yes, I may be weird but I used to think I was failing at something.

  5. Wow Ericka you got some great deals! Hope your arm is better soon... I got some Christmas gifts at a great deal this week. Way cheaper than making them. Hope everyone gets adjusted to school. Blessings Patti