Thursday, June 23, 2022

My Recent Frugal Accomplishments

Some of the amaranth I foraged

Today's the special day where I get to share with you the things I did to save money, also to remind myself that I did actually do frugal things when I feel like a failure there, and to hopefully give you some ideas of what you can also do to save money. or remind you of how you are already doing that.

So here are some of the frugal things I did since the last time I shared such a post (wow it's been a while!):

My Recent Frugal Accomplishments

Frugal Shopping
My washing machine completely broke, so I found a decent one with good reviews on a discount site. 

I got a lot of clothes for my kids as well as shoes for one for rock bottom prices at a few different thrift shops, including many fancy and name brand items, some that would have cost 20 times the price at the store, some never even worn.

I got clothes for my kids at a few different clothing stores, buying just the sale items in each place (buy one get the second 80 percent off in one of the places), allowing me to buy a full wardrobe for my kid that outgrew everything, for a minimal amount of money, despite being from "name brand" stores and in a particular style that my kid likes.

My daughter requested a new phone case, and I got one cheaply from Amazon, a fraction of what they cost locally, with free international shipping.

We were sorely lacking cutlery (is this something everyone goes through or just parents, having nearly no spoons or forks left, but lots of knives?) and I found a nice set (actually two, so I don't run out again) for literally a fraction of how much they usually cost, on groupon.

I started reading my girls a story before bed and I wanted something nice to cuddle with them on as I read to them, wanted a giant bean bag for that but I knew how expensive they were, but I bought one on groupon for half the standard price.  

I bought adjustable ankle braces for my wobbly ankles cheaply on Amazon with free international shipping.

My awesome blender finally died after 4 years of heavy usage. I bought myself a new one from Aliexpress, the perfect middle ground between good quality and affordable, a fraction of the price of a Vitamix but just as strong (though Vitamixes do last longer I hear). 
I bought grated cheese from cheese counter, much cheaper than grated cheese is packaged, and froze it so I wouldn't run out and need to pay full price at a closer store.

I bought chicken breast on sale and stocked up. 

I bought groceries at the scratch and dent store.


I foraged:
  • Amaranth greens
  • Wild fennel
  • Nopales/cactus paddles
  • Oatstraw
  • Lambsquarters
Frugal in the Kitchen

I turned rice that came out mushy into rice pudding. 

I turned leftover rice to curried lemon rice.

I turnd other leftover rice into fried rice,

And... I turned leftover rice into calas, rice donuts. (Oh my, I definitely have a lot of leftover rice needing revamping.)

I made a fake meat sauce using cheap TVP (soy) protein instead of ground meat.

I used overripe bananas to make banana bread.

I froze a bunch of overripe bananas to make smoothies.

I used foraged greens to make an Indian curry.

I used other foraged greens to make a stir fry.

I used foraged wild fennel to make an Italian pasta dish using free Beyond Sausage.

I made quesadillas using my free Beyond Sausage and free gluten free tortillas.

I used free gluten free tortillas to make tortilla pizzas.  

Made from Scratch

I made my own gluten free flour mix.

I made gluten free egg free wonton/egg roll wrappers completely from scratch. 

I made homemade gluten free egg free beef egg rolls using my homemad wrappers.

I made paneer cheese.

I made homemade marinara sauce.

I made gluten free and regular pizza homemade.

I used old yucky looking hot peppers to make homemade sriracha sauce. 

Frugal Fun

I rented a speedboat and went to a restaurant for a fun getaway with a single mom friend, getting both really cheaply with tickets from Groupon. 

I wanted to take my kids to a water park this summer, and while last year I found discount tickets on Groupon, this year I didn't find any discount tickets there for any halfway decent water park. I tried going through the list of different water parks in our area and looked for pricing there because I really wanted to take my children, as our trip last year was the highlight of our summer. But everywhere I looked, the tickets were quite expensive, ranging from $36-$40, which is significant if you're paying for 5 people... I found one place quite far from us for a "family discount" price of $30, which I was considering using. But before I gave up, I decided to try one last thing, and went to my credit card app to see if there was anything there that would help, and I found tickets for the same amazing waterpark we went to last year, for only $24 per person, for users of my credit card only and ordered through the app. I immediately ordered tickets for the family, because 33% off was quite significant when paying for 5. 

Frugal Travel

I used my application to pay for my busing, which gives me daily caps, monthly caps, and also gives me a discount because I'm a recipeint of government paid child support (since my ex doesnt pay). 

I found a car rental place that is significantly cheaper than the local place I'd been using, that only costs $2.85 per hour with a maximum of $34 per day plus 28 to 42 cents per kilometer including gas. The other local place, still significantly cheaper than other rental places, cost $70 per day. So I've managed to rent a car quite often this month and still did not spend more than $285, including gas.

Before I realized that the cheaper rental place had gas included in the price, I filled up the tank twice. I was kicking myself for wasting a good $85 on gas, but people recommended reaching out to the car rental company to see if they'd reimburse me, and they did- they gave me the amount of money I spent on gas, as credit towards future rentals. So that was a nice save, both proud of myself for contacting them, and appreciative that they did that.


My laptop's keyboard started being problematic and it needed replacing. Locally it was hard to find a replacement for my laptop's keyboard, and the one place that sold one charged $111 for it. Instead I looked online and found one for $23 on Aliexpress and used that to replace my keyboard (and paid a professional $34 to do that).

My daughter broke a bone in her foot and needed crutches, and instead of buying, I borrowed crutches for her. 

Oh, and I built a professional website for my work, including the graphics and content, all by myself! More on that in another post.

Yowza. That was a long list! I should make these posts more frequently!

What frugal things have you gotten up to lately?


  1. That's a really good list. . I've been using the Olio app for free food, bought a brilliant fruit and veg box for £1.50 from Lidls and lots of half price yellow sticker meat which is in the freezer. I was going to take my little granddaughter to the free event at the newly refurbished library but I have covid so isolating and resting.

  2. A seriously impressive list! I hope the injury requiring the crutches soon mends.


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