Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Frugal Friday: Money Saving Weekly Recap (Times 2)

 First, I want to thank everyone who has e-mailed or posted about their own dental visit anxiety.  It really made me feel less alone in my cowardice when it comes to facing the dentist.  Thank you :).

Right, so I guess I'll start there.  My dental visit.  Really, for not having been to the dentist in six years, I was expecting worse.  But, I do have a quarter of my mouth that is kind of a mess and I have one cavity that is deep enough that the dentist is concerned that it could be a potential root canal.  So, I go in next week and hopefully I'll just have to get a few cavities filled and be all right.  I'm hoping anyway as a few fillings won't cost me an arm and a leg, but a root canal?  Not so much.

Our weather decided to launch into winter the last few days.  Since it wasn't exceptionally early, I wasn't overly surprised by it, but it has definitely hammered home the need to get the windows insulated properly before the weather gets REALLY cold.  I got the son's room done a few days ago, but it is slow going getting the windows done as the son has been really busy of late and demanding a lot of attention.  I'm hoping to get the daughter's room done today, but so far I haven't gotten to that yet.  I'm still getting used to bifocals compared to the way my eyes were used to doing things and I've found that I get a bit disoriented (and thus suffer from eyestrain a bit) if I switch from near to far sight a lot as of yet.  It's getting better, but I'm still adapting.  I've only had my glasses less than a week, so I was told it would get better after a week or two.  Here's hoping :).

So, what else have I been up to the last couple of weeks?

Well, I e-mailed the Center for AAC and Autism looking for a program that I could use to add LAMP icons to pages in a word processing program and make my own worksheets and books for speech therapy.  They got back to me and, lucky for me, gave me some links to free resources that I could use to make worksheets and books happen.  I haven't had the time to really mess with the program a lot yet, but I'm super happy to have access to it.

I got the kids' work samples into our contact teacher and Alvah's Special Education contact teacher for the first quarter of school and both teachers were very thrilled with everything sent in.  I have to say that it ends up being a ton of work for me to organize, photograph and describe everything that we did, but at the same time I'm happy that they are happy with the job we are doing.  So, yeah for that being done for the quarter!

And now, onto other money saving things that have gone on the last couple of weeks.

1.  My husband and I went yesterday and got our flu shots.  We get immunizations free through our insurance, so I was happy to get that done for the year :).  My mother-in-law was nice enough to come and keep the kids company while my husband and I went and got our shots, which was really awesome of her and much appreciated!

2.  We have been trying to figure out what to do for Halloween this year as most local events are completely canceled due to Covid.  We went to the recycling center this weekend to get rid of the tons of cardboard that conglomerate around here and we found that the recycling center is going to have a Haunted Trail outdoor event on Halloween, which we are thinking about going to as it is outside with social distancing protocols in place.  We'll then have Halloween treats that we'll make and have at home as well, so hopefully the kids won't feel too badly about missing out on Halloween fun.

3.  Using the free Lose It app on my phone to track my calories I'm consuming in a day, I'm steadily losing the weight I've been trying to get off for a while now.  Yay!

4.  My husband took my son out by himself one day and they went and got to play around on heavy equipment at my brother-in-laws and got to go run around a farm as well.  Alvah did awesome!  He was able to steer some vehicles and was even able to back up a mini-excavator my brother-in-law had all by himself.  I'm hopeful that maybe we finally found Alvah's autistic "obsession" and if it revolves around driving heavy equipment that, at least, can definitely translate into a job when he gets older.  I am, to say the least, thrilled :).

5.  I loaded the Amazon Music app on my phone and have been really enjoying listening to a bunch of albums that are available to listen to for free through Prime.  The daughter and I like to listen to music while doing schoolwork, so it has been a welcome change of pace to listen to some of the albums versus listening to the like three albums I've actually purchased over the years *laugh*.

6.  Amazon offered me a 3.00 giftcard for writing a brief review of a product that I'd purchased.  I took about ten minutes of my time, wrote the review and got the 3.00 credit applied to my account.  I combined that with a 10.00 gift card I got for redeeming some credit card rewards and some Amazon associate fees (thank you to everyone who orders through associate fees on the blog.  It really does help!) and was able to get a few Christmas gifts for the kids out of the way for not much out of pocket.  With how much prices are rising on things, I'm grateful for every penny to help pay for things :).

7.  I rearranged one of the bookcases by the loveseat in the living room that housed my cookbook collection and ended up moving my entire cookbook collection down into the den and moved the kids school books for the year upstairs.   This will allow us to be able to grab schoolwork and move about six feet to the kitchen table versus the daughter having to take numerous trips up and down the stairs with loads of books in her arms every day.  She's going through that awkward phase in development where she's really uncoordinated, so I REALLY didn't want her running up and down the stairs with heavy books in her arms and not being able to see well.  It was a lot of work getting everything shifted around, but I'm thankful to have it done :).

8.  We changed the filter on our water softener this weekend.  It was WAY overdue because of us not thinking about it, honestly, with all the earthquake stuff taking up our brain power.  Our water has HEAVY iron in it, so when my husband saw that the water in the salt tank was looking red, we knew it was way overdue to get the filter changed.  I'm glad to have that done and checked off of the "to do" list.  We only have to change the filter on the fridge and on the well once a year, so doing it in a timely fashion is definitely preferable.

9.  I put in a Subscribe and Save order with Amazon, taking advantage of sales they had for Prime Day to maximize my savings.  I ordered dish soap (we use Seventh Generation) as it isn't readily available at Carrs (which is my main store I shop at) and a few other things.  I was able to bury the five item threshold to get 15% off of your subscribe and save items so that should save me a bunch of money when the items ship at the end of the month.

10.  I was offered a code for ten free Christmas cards from Shutterfly.  I quickly went and designed the card and used the code to only pay 4.99 shipping on the cards.  Since this passes for me sending pictures of the kids to extended family, I was happy to get the cards out of the way earlier than I was expecting this year :).

11.  I had some recipes I really wanted to try.  Instead of paying out for expensive sauces and things, I went and found recipes for the sauces, found that I had nearly all the ingredients to make multiple sauces and all I had to order was a 5.00 spice versus spending a lot more than that ordering multiple sauces to make the recipes :).  

12.  For a fun Octoberfest type of meal I made soft pretzels, bratwurst and home made sauerkraut.  My husband loved the meal and I found that using Alton Brown's recipe for soft pretzels, but subbing out 1/2 of the flour for bread flour and then keeping the other 1/2 AP flour that the pretzels had the texture and crumb that I had been trying to get for years from the recipe.  I was super happy with the results and the husband has no problem taking leftovers to work for lunch, so double bonus!

And I'm going to call it good there.  I need to start worrying about getting dinner ready to go.  I hope you all had a great two weeks and are doing what you can to get through everything!

1 comment:

  1. I was never happier than the day I discovered that in real Indian cooking (my husband LOVES Indian food) there's no such thing as prepared curry powder like you buy at the supermarket. Indian women all have their own recipe for curry powder and they mix it up themselves. I found a representative recipe, tweaked it to suit our taste, and have never run out of curry powder since. So many of these expensive sauces and spice mixtures can be made from scratch and taste much better! :0)