Saturday, August 4, 2018

Frugal Friday: Money Saving Weekly Recap

You know, I'm officially looking forward to school starting again.  I'm nervous and anxious about having both kids in two different schools and definitely nervous about having to get both kids up an hour earlier than they are used to as they are both not morning kids (well during the school year anyway), but I'm definitely looking forward to being able to have some time to myself to do things like blogging during the day where I don't have to worry about the son getting into things while I'm working on something else.  I'm looking forward to getting back to regular menu plans and things again.  Being this disorganized is driving me a bit batty of late.

This week was insanely hectic.  My husband took a couple of days off, which gave him a five nights off.  Monday he got home from work, mowed the lawn and then slept till about 9 pm.  While he was doing that I dropped the son off and picked him up from therapy and in between went shopping for the few things we needed as it was pay day. 

Then Tuesday we had therapy and swimming lessons for both kids as well as dinner at my in-laws after the swimming lessons were over (which it was about 9 pm when we got home) AND we went to the school and met the daughter's orchestra teacher while the son was in therapy.  Wednesday we had therapy and we went to the library while Alvah was in therapy to see if my daughter wanted to get a book (she did) and after therapy we went to the music store and got Armina the books she would need for orchestra, got her a humidifier for her violin and are on the waiting list for a shoulder rest for when they come in next week. 

Thursday we had the kid's six month check up with the dentist, which blew therapy for that day.  It went well and no cavities to worry about, thank goodness (the idea of Alvah getting cavities gives me huge amounts of anxiety as he has to be put under to get any dental work done, which is always worrisome).  Friday we had therapy and Armina's final violin lesson of the summer. 

Somehow in between everything else we managed to get the kids school shoes, got the kids some last minute school clothes at the used store, dropped off a gift for my sister-in-law to thank her for the violin lessons (jellies and jams are awesome for these occasions) and my husband fixed his car that had broken down.  AND I kept the house clean.

It's amazing I remember my own name at this point *laugh*.

In between all the other hectic things going on, there was some money saving things that happened too, so let's get to those!

1.  I finally sat down and forced my daughter to go through her clothes in her dresser.  I'd told her to go through them about fifteen times, but she never had many clothes to show for doing it, so I knew she wasn't REALLY doing it.  So, I sat down and started weeding.  I found some things that were just plain in tatters that my daughter was keeping because she loved the items so much (and some things that were way too small too).  The one item she was in tears over was her favorite unicorn shirt that was way too small for her now a days and had developed a few holes  in the back from being so thread bare.  I felt bad for her about it, so I asked if she would like for me to frame the unicorn picture on the shirt instead of throwing the shirt away.  She jumped at the chance.  So, I took the picture she'd drawn of Elsa off of her wall, carefully removed it from the scrap booking paper I'd used to pad out the frame with (I had her put the picture into her special folder for her artwork to keep it safe), cut out the unicorn portion of the t-shirt and mounted it in the frame instead.  It helped the daughter's heartbreak a little bit anyway.

In other news I'm thinking that a room decor redo might be in the future for the daughter's room.  She is definitely going into more of a fantasy vein in her tastes.  I'm seeing it kind of clashing with the country cottage type of decor I have going on in her room right now, but we shall see how it goes :).

2.  I've spent a lot of time on Pinterest pinning different ideas for meal prepping for the daughter's and husband's lunches.  Armina will be without a microwave at lunch during middle school (as they eat in the cafeteria instead of in the classrooms) and neither she nor her father really like sandwiches all that much, so I'm trying to find other options to make meals that are things they'll actually EAT and also be different than sandwiches.  And things that I can make ahead of time on the weekends for the week ahead so I'm not going nuts all week long getting up super early to make lunches.

3.  I am one of those shoppers that outfits like Williams Sonoma hate as I always wait for a really high value coupon combined with free shipping and then I go and get some low cost item I need.  I got one such coupon this week for 30% off of my order and free shipping with a personalized code, no minimum purchase.  There's a small list of things I need, so I went looking for the low cost items to see if I could get one of those items cheap.  I managed to get a vegetable brush (which I've DEFINITELY needed as my other one plain fell apart) for about 3.00 shipped from Williams Sonoma which beat all the local stores on cost for getting a brush that would work for the purpose I needed it for.  So, yay for that!

4.  I shopped carefully this week as I knew money was going to get tight with all of the school things we had to spend money on.  Freebies (as I posted about last time) and coupons helped and I'm planning only picking up the essentials the next couple of weeks to conserve what money we have left (since next pay period is always our short pay period with the mortgage being due and all).

5.  I emptied out some plastic drawers that had been sitting in my master bedroom closet for years and not only found some of my good art supplies (which I've been looking for for a long time now), but I was also able to move the drawers into the kid's bathroom and used it to hold some spare wet wipes (as it seems I always need them for the son and suddenly I'm holding an empty container of them) and other items we always seem to run out of, need, and really don't want to run into the hallway to get them out of the china cabinet. 

6.  I finally plucked up my courage and went out and checked the raspberries in the yard to see if we had any this year.  I found that the bushes along the very front of our yard had been taken out by a bear (plucked those bushes clean) if the bear scat and the crushed underbrush was any indication, which stunk (and worried me as I REALLY hate when the bears get that close to my house, human beings and the highway as that means they are way too comfortable with all of those things) but the back yard raspberries that survived the moose eating them off have a few on them.  I did manage to harvest a small handful and I harvested a BUNCH of rhubarb this year off of my one monster plant by the house (I really need to take a picture of that's amazing how big it is now a days).  We won't get many raspberries off of our bushes this year, at all, but I texted my mother-in-law and she said it was okay to pick her raspberries again this year.  Since I don't need as much raspberry jam this year, I'm really looking forward to being able to get some bags of raspberries into the freezer as well as get some for other uses.  I'm really grateful to my mother-in-law for letting me pick her berries as those are platinum plated if you buy them at the stores :).

7.  My mother-in-law made my daughter a case to hold her music stand and sheet music so Armina doesn't have to hang them in a reusable shopping bag on her door (which worked, kind of).  She made it out of two old place mats, some old ribbon and a piece of belt material.  It works well and I was impressed with her frugality :).

8.  I got the laundry all caught up and put away and got the bedroom closet a bit more organized. 

I picked up a copy of Martha Stewart's Home Keeping Manual at the used store and was reading it this week (which, by the way, if you want to feel like you are an absolute failure as a home keeper definitely read the book.  Just the amount of dusting you are supposed to do every day blew my mind *laugh*).  I found a lot of good information in the book, including the various types of pillows and what they are used for.  I have some poly fiber fill stuffing and a couple of old pillows that I can use the stuffing from, so I am thinking of trying my hand at making more pillows for my bed as my husband and I are both suffering from discomfort from our bed of late (I KNOW we need a new mattress, but we can't afford it, so I'm going to make it work with what I have if I can).

And yeah, there is more that I did this week, I'm sure of it, but darned if I can remember it all, so I'm going to call it good.  I am working on my shopping goals and monthly goals period and am nearly done, so I'm hoping to have those up tomorrow, so stay tuned for that :).  How did your week go?


  1. I think the unicorn picture looks great and that was an excellent idea of yours. Your daughter can enjoy looking at the picture every day.

  2. What you did with the unicorn shirt looks great and is so sweet! I wouldn't have thought of framing a shirt, that's so creative. I really admire your think-outside-the-box attitude and creativity!

    I'm not sure if I'm looking forward to back to school yet. I do so much running during the school year, and my schedule's going to be weird, at least for the first semester, because my daughter is in preschool on different days than she was last year, so that'll throw everything off. It was a relief when everyone was done with school this year. But this is the last year my daughter will be in preschool; kindergarten comes next year (and my son will be a senior then! ACK!), so I'm going to try to enjoy the chaos. :)

  3. Erika- I don't really like sandwiches either and my problem is the bread. I'm not a fan of "white" bread. I will eat a sandwich with harder bread. I even will eat the on hot dog buns. My baby brother would put peanut butter and a banana on a hot dog bun for a monkey dog. (I don't eat bananas).
    I use to take crackers and cheese and lunchmeat as a substitute. All packaged separately of course.
    Neither of those may help. Just throwing them out there.


  4. Love the idea of the picture, and you do such a great job with the pressure you are under. I just admire you so much.

  5. What a great idea to salvage the unicorn image for your daughter! Why not get both your husband and daughter a food thermos so they can take leftovers, soups, stews etc. for a hot lunch without the need of a microwave. You can get all different sizes and I know that the real "Thermos" brand ones keep food pretty hot.
    When do kids go back to school in Alaska? Here they start back the day after Labour Day - so this year that will be Sept. 5th. Every year STAPLES runs back to school ads that use the "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year" Christmas song - but it's parents full of joy about the kids finally going back - and they are always hilarious!
    This week I have been concentrating on emptying boxes of paper - yesterday I got through 4 boxes and 3/4 of it is going to recycling! I'm finally letting go of old magazines and printouts that i've had for years and haven't looked at in all that time. The little bit that is left will be going into a binder or two so what I actually need will be easily accessible!

  6. You had a productive week, that's for sure! The unicorn picture is a great idea!

  7. I always enjoy reading your messages. I am in awe of all you get accomplished! The idea to put the tshirt in a picture frame was a great idea!!!

  8. If your mattress isn't giving you good support you can slip a sheet of 3/4" plywood under it ( between the mattress and the box spring). It will give you better support and helps with back pain.

    1. We couldn't afford to replace our daughter's mattress in a timely fashion either. So until money was easier to come by, we just bought a piece of foam, at the hardware store, (that is made to put on beds), for a bit more cushion. She was quite happy with the result. That gave us at least a year before the mattress was replaced.