Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Our Latest Frugal Accomplishments in Quarantine

So, I've been under quarantine at home the last two weeks, and now there's a shut down so no leaving the house. In some ways, this can be a more expensive time, but being at home, there are so many DIY things we're able to do to save money, with all this time, and sometimes needing to do DIY because we can't bring in a professional to do it for us.

So I made this list of frugal things me family and I got up to these last three weeks, mostly in quarantine. And I'm sorry its taken so long for me to post, its just so hard for me to focus with everything going on. I have lists a mile long of things I want to post, and I'm going to try to get them up soon.

Here's what my family and I did to save money these last three weeks, nearly without leaving my house.

Frugal in the Kitchen

I had leftover frosting in the fridge that hardened, and I needed more of it, so I repurposed it by mixing it with sour cream and powdered sugar to make new frosting.
I had some onions with unusable parts, so I picked through them and took out the hard or the rotten parts and used the rest of it for making soup.
I made Indian red lentil dal.
I made majadra, lentils with rice, for lunch.
I made tvp "meat" sauce.
I stretched some frozen ground chicken I had with TVP to make chili.
I had a pot of chicken soup, my kids love chicken soup but don't always love the meat, and wanted liquid so I kept on reboiling the chicken with more water, seasoning, and occasional veggies to make more soup, and ended up making close to 3 pots of soup with the same original chicken.
I made soup from leftover tomato sauce, soft peppers and tomatoes, and leftover chicken soup, and added lentils to it for protein.
I repurposed leftover bread into onion soup casserole.


I made gnocchi with foraged mallow.
I used oregano from my garden for pasta sauce.
I made chutney from mallow leaves.
Foraged sea beet for a few recipes, mainly in soups and sauces.
I used mint and lemon verbena from my garden for drinks.

Made From Scratch

I made homemade tomato sauce.
I made homemade gluten bread.
I made gluten free vegan onion bread.
I made homemade sushi using all ingredients I already had at home.
I made homemade gluten free birthday cake frosted with repurposed leftover frosting and sprinkles from the scratch and dent store.
I made many different types of iced tea a bunch of times- wild berry iced tea, lemon iced tea, lemon verbena and mint iced tea, etc...
I made popsicles using homemade iced tea.
I made vegan cheese sauce.
I got a kombucha mother and started making kombucha again.
I got kefir grains and started making kefir.
I made popcorn in our free popcorn maker.
I made homemade tortillas for taco night, in which we used ground beef stretched with grated zucchini, plus homemade pico de gallo, and dairy free cheese sauce that I made from tofutti cream cheese that had accidentally gotten frozen in my fridge.
I made pho with beef broth from the freezer, leftover beef from the freezer, and greens from the yard.


I fixed my dishwasher with help from a repairman via the telephone.
I built an Ikea closet and shelving unit with my son that I purchased in December, but had been waiting unbuilt in my house because of my pelvic injury, and I'd considered paying someone to build it. But Lee and I did it ourselves once I healed and saved a ton of money.
I'm in the process of finally installing a climbing wall in my kids' room.
We're painting the triple bunk bed in my kids' room, I'll show you when it's finally finished.
We're in the process of fixing the water damage in our living room ceiling. (The builders of our home repaired the leak, but left us responsible for fixing the damage to the ceiling. Fortunately there's no mold.)

Frugal Fun

My kids have been making lots of crafts with cardboard boxes- thanks to our Ikea building.
My kids crafted with rocks.
We had a paint party night; hopefully I'll post more about this in another post.
I took a fun hike in the forest near my house with my two autistic kids, since I have permission legally to leave with only them more than the 100 meters everyone else is allowed to leave their house now.

Frugal Shopping

I ordered a birthday present from Aliexpress.
I ordered new harmonicas and ocarinas to keep us entertained, literally the day before Amazon canceled free shipping to my country.
I disputed charges on Aliexpress for two broken items and got a full refund.
I bought stuff from scratch and dent stores.
I bought a microwave on sale to better use leftovers.

What frugal things have you gotten up to lately? Are you finding quarantine/shutdown to be more expensive for you or more frugal for you? How has it been affecting your frugality?

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