Sunday, December 13, 2015

Frugal Accomplishments This Week

I haven't shared my weekly frugal accomplishments with you in quite a while. To be honest, a big part of it was me feeling like I wasn't living up to the frugal standards I held for myself, so I felt a bit like a fraud sharing my "frugal accomplishments" which didn't feel like big accomplishments at all.
But lately, as in the past 2 or 3 weeks, I have been putting in a bigger effort to be more frugal, and not just that, but also to track what frugal things I did, so that I can look back over the past week and feel encouraged by what I managed to do, and not discouraged by the times that I wasn't as frugal as I should.

And so, maybe not the most frugal week ever, but I think I did a decent amount of frugal things.

Frugal Accomplishments This Week

So first off, I have to share that this past week my husband has had off work for winter break, and I wanted to fun things as a family, but I didn't want anything that would cost too much money, and so, I decided to pre-plan things and pay a visit to this store in town where everything there costs only 25 cents, and buy some little things which could be the basis for various frugal activities. I bought bubbles, coloring books, playing cards, playdough, spirographs, mini flashlights, etc... and at random time I would just whip out some of them and we'd do an activity based on them. I think total I spent 5 dollars on all the stuff, but it provided many hours of entertainment.

I also wanted to share that in addition to doing things to save money this week, I also did what I could to earn some extra cash, by selling homemade gluten free goods to a few different people.

And now, on to more specifics:

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Frugality In The Kitchen
Brought home leftovers from the family get together.
Making Food From Scratch:
Ground lots and lots of gluten free flour
Made up lots of batches of homemade gluten free bread mix
Made a bunch of gluten free donuts
Made a gluten free birthday cake
Made homemade ketchup
Made chocolate chip cookies from scratch
Frugal Foods:
Made a lentil dish as the protein for a family get together.
Made chicken soup from concentrated chicken soup "mix" I had in the freezer and a chicken carcass.
Cooked up some salmon heads for supper, then used the leftover bones to make salmon bone broth
Made buckwheat porridge for breakfast
Reused disposable aluminum pans
Made a chickweed salad for guests
Made soup from chickweed, leftover zucchini and leftover sweet potatoes and leftover chicken

Frugal Fun
When I was in the city, I promised the kids something nice, considered taking them to a restaurant, even sat at a restaurant with them and a friend, but instead bought them each 2 treats from the "dollar" coffee shop, which everyone enjoyed and was a fraction of what it would have cost at a regular restaurant.
Had a family get together and spent nothing, only used what was in the house to make a few dishes

Frugal Shopping:
Stopped in a cheap grocery store to buy cheapo gluten free bread to make gluten free garlic bread for a family get together, walked in with a short short list, and bought only ONE thing not on that list.
Walked to a farther grocery store to buy cheaper milk and diapers on sale
Ordered some clothes for myself and the kids from aliexpress including dresses for my brother's wedding, and shoes- I got recommendations on how to make sure the stuff actually fits properly, and now am really hoping that it'll work out well- but even if not, I didn't spend so much at all.... $15 for a bridesmaid type dress for myself including shipping... Also ordered Toms style shoes from Aliexpress for myself.

Foraged milk thistle, chickweed, wood sorrel, nettles, plantain, wild mustard, sow thistle, and pine nuts.

So, what frugal things did you do this past week? Any you're especially proud of?


  1. Within the last week I made two homemade cleaning products :

    An all purpose cleaner and a tub cleaner that was so simple and really works just as well or better then the strong chemical cleaners that I was using but have been trying to get away from:

    All purpose cleaner:
    3 tbs dish liquid
    3 tbs isopropyl alcohol
    30 drops essential oil ( I used lemon grass)
    32 ounce or less spray bottle
    Directions : add first 3 ingredients to bottle with funnel, fill up bottle to top with water.
    I have been using it to clean the bathroom sinks, mirror toilet.

    Tub cleaner
    1 cup dish soap ( I used a color and fragrance free one but I suppose any kind would work)
    - 2 cups white vinegar
    - spray bottle
    - combine in container using funnel.

    - This tub cleaner has been giving my tub the " new tub" clean - for real- and without the harsh fumes

  2. How do you find and collect pine nuts? They are super expensive at the grocery and we are surrounded by pine trees! But I don't know which varieties to look for and how to prepare them.

    1. My understanding is that the pine cone doesn't matter, they all have pine nuts. Ya gotta collect them when they first start falling off the tree, usually October, stick them in a pillow case and let them open naturally over time. Lot easier than trying to open them yourself. However for the 5 or 10 nuts you get out of one cone, it's really cheaper (time wise) just to buy them at the store. You don't need a bunch of pine nuts in most recipes, since they act more like bacon bits once you roast them. Good luck beating the squirrels.

    2. http://www.pennilessparenting.com/2011/02/harvesting-pine-nuts-foraged-food.html She already did a article on this. Quite amusing too.

  3. I am still learning to be frugal. I want to learn how to forge. I just joined a food co-op which helps me. This summmer I canned or froze everything I could for the winter time. Also to avoid spending money if I take someone to the store I stay in the car so I will not be tempted to spend money thanks to you I am getting use to stay strong.


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