Friday, November 25, 2016

Frugal Friday: Money Saving Weekly Recap

Well, I hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving.  Ours was a comedy of errors, really, but it all turned out alright. 

First, my husband and I didn't sleep well the night before Thanksgiving.  The son unit started acting like his stomach was bugging him or something close to bedtime and we were worried he had a stomach bug or something, so we took turns watching him throughout the night just to be sure he was okay.  Luckily he was alright (I think when I gave him his daily medicine at around bedtime some just didn't sit on his stomach well at first and that's what was going on with him) and at about four, I decided it was definitely time to trust he would be okay, threw some more ice into the turkey brine and I went to bed for a few hours.

I woke up at eight, even though I had wanted to get up at about seven, barely able to move.  Turns out, moving a bookcase up the stairs and repeatedly flipping the couch over to get tacks in at certain angles overworked my legs...probably because I had to use my legs even more than normal because of the reduced flexibility in my left arm.  So, getting moving in the morning was a BIT difficult, but after a cup of coffee and some Ibuprofen I was feeling a lot better in that area.

And then my daughter got up for the day and it turned out that she finally caught the cold that had gone through the entire household.  So, she was teary eyed and in a bad mood all day yesterday and today and we have been trying to get her to take it easy and just get over the cold.  I was worried when she ended up with the cold yesterday full force that we were, once again, going to end up in the ER on Black Friday, but luckily it seems to be taking the course of a normal cold this time around.  At least she was able to actually taste Thanksgiving dinner yesterday as she'd been looking forward to Thanksgiving for weeks.

I cooked the turkey too long at a too high of a temperature because my son distracted me when I should have put the temperature down, but luckily with the turkey being brined and a triangle of tin foil on it, the turkey survived alright.  The husband got distracted by the son when he was pouring the turkey brine down the drain for me and ended up flooding it onto the counter, so I ended up with an hour long "clean up the cross contamination nightmare" event.  But, it helped me to detail clean the counter, so there was a bright side to that event as well.

So, yeah, we made it through Thanksgiving alright.  Grateful for the food on our table, the roof over our heads and the knowledge that we didn't have to go anywhere this weekend :).

Today I went online and looked at since I wasn't going to be doing any shopping today with a sick daughter and such and checked out what I could get on sale for utility fabrics.  The only thing I could find was a 25 yard bolt of muslin which after the 50% discount and shipping would have cost about 45.00.  Not a bad deal by any stretch, but it was just more than I could spend right now...we have bills to make here in the next couple of weeks, so I just let it go.  I know there will be more deals coming down the pike at a later date, so I'm not stressing over it.  But, yeah, saying "no" to deals you can't afford is sometimes the hardest part about living frugally, but it is a part of it.

So, onto other money saving endeavors this week!

1.  My super cheap Kindle came in the mail today as well as Christmas gifts from my mom and sister (they sent gift cards and I ordered the gifts).  I was thrilled to watch my first video on You Tube (I queued up "Victorian Farm Christmas" to watch with my daughter cuddling on my lap since she wasn't feeling good) as the picture quality and buffering were SO much better than my old laptop it was like watching a little TV.  Very, very cool.

2.  I finished up the majority of one arm of the couch project today (seen up top).  My husband isn't overly impressed with the back I put on the couch, but could understand why I did it the way I did, but I have to say that I think once the arms are actually done it'll look a lot more cohesive and put together.  I'm hoping once I get the slip covers for the cushions made that we'll essentially have a new couch if the material holds up for a while.

Since I'm doing this project, quite literally, with materials I have on hand, this project is costing me nothing but time.

3.  I looked up on You Tube some tutorials for making wreaths from scratch.  I'm thinking of giving it a shot with materials I have at hand and seeing how they turn out.  I figure with having pine and things around my yard, if it doesn't turn out I'm not really out that much, so we'll see how it goes.

4.  When I was at the used store earlier in the week dropping off donations, I checked out what they had and found they had a bunch of queen sized comforters from 8.00 to 11.00 a piece.  We've gotten to a point where we are really in need of some comforters as with my son constantly making a mess of blankets, we just plain have worn some of them out.  I mean we have a few comforters that I have rebuilt about four times and they are just finally done.  I went online to see what I could find for comforters to replace what we had, planning to use part of our Christmas giftcards I get from my family to pay for them, but not only were the ones I could find not cheap, but they weren't even good quality to justify the price you would have to pay for them.  So, I decided to bite the financial bullet, as it were, and went to the used store with my husband one day and bought three comforters sets to replace ones that are going to be subsequently retired.  Nice part is that each set came with pillow cases too, so that will be nice to have as well.  Three comforter sets cost me less than one comforter would have cost me online, so while paying out so 30.00 at once was harsh, it was worth it (I wanted to get some of the sets before they sold out because it's rare that the used stores get comforters in, especially in sets, that are brand new quality like these were). 

5.  On Thanksgiving since my daughter wasn't really up to watching TV out in the living room with the rest of us and just wanted to watch things in her room lying down, my husband and I brought my laptop out and watched the Turkey Day special for MST3K on Shout Factory's website.  Every Thanksgiving they stream a bunch of movies for free from the Mystery Science Theater 3000 archives, so that was fun to watch while I was cooking and things.  It was fun and it was free :).

6.  I started cleaning up the house some more today in preparation of getting the Christmas decorations out of storage and put up for the year, which is frugal in that it helps make cleaning the house later easier and also because it helps me to realize things that could just plain get weeded out and things.  Here's hoping I can get it all done tomorrow as I really do want to get the decorations up and out of the way so I can focus on making gifts and things.

7.  I went online today and checked out the ads via e-mail to find that Fred Meyer is doing 25 Days of Deals or something like that and they had a freebie coupon today for a free candy storybook.  So, I loaded that onto my card as well as the free Twix or Snickers freebie.  The Twix or Snickers freebie will go into my husband's stocking and the storybook will go into one of the kid's stockings, so yay for free stocking stuffers!

8.  My husband and I were finally able to enjoy a glass of eggnog on Thanksgiving.  I use a recipe that Alton Brown developed that calls for a lot of eggs and a lot of alcohol, but I was able to use the last of the eggs I had from babysitting the chickens (you only use egg yolks in the recipe and I really love the big yolks with the farm fresh eggs vs the store eggs) and used up alcohol we still had left over from making eggnog last year (yup we're that heavy of drinkers around here *laugh*).  I did have to buy a container of cream to make the eggnog, but overall it was really cheap to make this year.  Since this is one of the few Christmas treats my husband really enjoys, I was happy that I was able to make it for him :). 

9.  Shopping this week cost me 37.00.  I got the son his junk food with that and also got fresh herbs for Thanksgiving and milk.  And yeah, that was about it for grocery shopping this week :).

And that is about it on our end for the week.  How about you?  Any frugal adventures to report?


  1. I completely understand your horror of cross-contamination! I'm a vegetarian married to a meat-a-tarian and while I do 99% of the cooking...I don't cook meat. So occasionally the DH will cook up a batch of meat, which is fine, until he leaves the cutting board with raw meat juices, lying in the sink. I don't mind dishes in the sink, but I freak out about potential bacteria, and the thought of it cross-contaminating other dishes that I might not wash in scalding hot water. So yes, I get your concern! And kudos to you for looking on the bright side and thinking of it as detailing your counter!

  2. I was sick over Thanksgiving too. I picked up a cold starting Monday and just started feeling a little better today. We had a beef roast for Thanksgiving this year. No one but me likes turkey at our house. My hubby marinates it in McCormick Garlic and Peppercorn marinade mix for 24 hours. Then browns it on both sides and sticks in the oven for a couple of hours. It is always delicious. I bought a bigger roast than normal because I got it for $10.00 off. And we had leftovers for three meals. Tonight he finished the roast up by shredding it and adding BBQ sauce for sandwiches. So good. Glad your Thanksgiving ended up being good... thanks for sharing!

  3. Happy belated Thanksgiving!

    I hope your daughter is feeling better soon. Colds are no fun! Glad your Thanksgiving turned out okay in spite of the distractions and that you were able to find such a good deal on the comforters!

    I can't wait to see your couch when it's all done! Good job!
    Have a great week,

  4. We had a great day on Thanksgiving and a wonderful family outing yesterday. We still have so much food left over that we will cruise on what we have this week, too. I put turkey rice soup in the crock pot this morning. I'll bet lots of people did:)

  5. Im getting over a cold too, its been so bad I thought day before thansgiving I would actually have to see a doctor, but Ive escaped that.

    Today my husband told me he only wants to recover the sectional bottom attatched cushions. Essentially making it two colors. And he doesn't get why that upsets me moreso than the peeling sectional. So much so I can't stand the idea of it and feel like crying every time I think of it. And since Im married to someone who think tears only exist as a weapon against men and are never genuine thats not a good idea! But I just can't stand the thought.

    We did do some shopping, and chances are I have spent more than I should. When I was growing up, my mom never bought gifts for holidays, christmas and birthday was not the least bit special or magical so I do tend to get in the mindset of getting my kids just the right things. I always manage to spend around $100 each, then modest from Santa, but every year I catch myself wanting to do more, to get everything so they aren't disappointed. I need to fix that. For the first time ever they both came with me to do a little shopping for others, and my oldest gets it, but the 4 year old was all me, me me. I think its just a phase, but makes me feel a bit failed.

    I hope everyone there feels better, and your enjoy your new kindle! I got my mom one for $33, shes going to love it I hope.

  6. I like the way the couch is looking. Keep posting pictures as you progress.
    Thanksgiving was exhausting for me since I do all the cooking then end up sending the food home with everyone. It is my once a year tradition. The refrigerator is so empty today that I washed down the insides. So tonight I ended up cooking white beans, corn bread and mustard greens from the garden. It was all eaten so tomorrow I must start over. Sigh.

    1. Typo - I didn't grow the cornbread in the garden!

  7. I made soup too!! Turkey (of course), corn rivel (tiny dough lumps), soup. Today I made a turkey pie. I froze most of the rest of the turkey so the family wouldn't revolt if I serve it again!! We may be looking at couch alternatives too. Our son plopped/flopped/flung himself on it one too many times and last night a whole section of springs popped. This is on top of having already cut off the stray sprung coil here and there but this is a whole section in the middle of the couch. ARG!! I don't want to replace it, 1 I really love our couch and 2 this is not a good time of the year to buy a replacement''. If it's not too lumpy we will just put up,with it for a bit. Maybe we can just put a bunch of cushions on the floor and just sit in them!!!