Wednesday, January 4, 2023

My Recent Frugal Accomplishments

Mallow from my yard

It's been a while since I did one of these posts, where I list the recent frugal things I've done. This hasn't just been done in the last week, more like the past month plus, but who cares? This is also to encourage me to do more frugal things, to remind myself that even when I feel like a frugal failure I'm not actually a failure, and hopefully to inspire you to do more frugal things as well.

Here are the frugal things I did recently, broken down by category:

Free Things
A friend told me about a place where they were giving away free beef tortellini and soy based cream cheese type spread, and even though by the time I got home it should have all been gone, I went to check and there still was available so I brought home a few boxes. 
I got free past prime sweet potatoes and pumpkins. 

I harvested onion greens from some onions I had that were sprouting on the shelf. 
I harvested and froze a bunch of lemon grass stalks when thinning out my plant in my yard.
I picked a lot of sea beet, wild swiss chard, from my back yard.
I foraged a lot of mallow that popped in my back yard.

Frugal Cooking
I used foraged mallow in omelets.
I made tomato sauce with mallow.
I used home grown sea beet in soup.
I made a delicious rissoto type dish with home grown sea beet, ground beef bought on sale, leftover rice, and the free soy based spread.
I made the tortellini I got with a cream sauce made from the free soy spread I got.
I repurpused leftover rice to make rice pudding.
I repurposed turkey to make turkey pot pie.
I used soft tomatoes, wilting peppers, and eggplant on its last legs to make a ratatouille type dish.
I made bolognese type sauce with TVP soy flakes purchased from the scratch and dent store.
I used TVP strips bought from the scratch and dent store to make gluten free vegan schwarma "meat".
I stretched ground beef with grated zucchini to make meat sauce.

Stir fry made with sea beet, wild swiss chard, grown in my yard

Made From Scratch
I made homemade falafel.
I made homemade bread.
I made homemade paneer cheese.
I made homemade tomato sauce.
I ground my own gluten free rice flour.

Frugal Fun
I went to a free party at pottery place and was gifted a beautiful pottery cup. 
I took my daughter bouldering and made sure to go before 5 pm so that we would get the early discount, making a cheap activity even cheaper. 

I bleached, dyed, and cut my own hair.
I fixed my freezer.

My homemade card game

Frugal Shopping
I went to Ikea with a firm list of things that were cheaper at Ikea only bought exactly what was on my list. (Easier said than done.)  
I purchased vitamins and xanthan gum from Iherb, much cheaper than they are locally, and used coupons from Honey to make it cheaper. 
I limited gifting for the holidays, and what I did, I price compared and mostly purchased them cheaper via Amazon. 
I bought a refurbished Pixel phone on Black Friday with an extra sale on Ebay. 
I bought second hand books from Better World Books Black Friday sale after comparing each item to the same book on Book Depository.
I purchased an air cast for my ankle from Amazon since it is much cheaper than it costs locally. (Too bad it hurts my foot more than not wearing it at all...)
I purchased an alarm clock for heavy sleepers from Amazon (again, much cheaper than locally) and fortunately it works well!
My daughter needed a new dressy outfit and we found a bargain rack at a really expensive store where the clothes were almost cheaper than at cheap stores. 
I purchased end of season shoes for 50% off.
At Toys R Us they had a discount for people who had their app. For some reason their app wouldn't work on my phone (it said it wasn't available in my country even though it was a local one....) but when I showed them that I tried getting the app they allowed me to get the discount (almost 50% off) even without the app. (It's worthwhile to ask, they can always say no.)
My son asked for nice sneakers, not just the cheaper ones we buy locally, since he no longer is changing shoe sizes, and then found a pair online exactly what he was looking for, cheaper than the cheap stores locally. 
My dad is going to the US and asked me if he could bring anything back for me. I have the Alexa Echo Dot and we love it. Ok, I have two, one in my son's room and one in my bedroom, but I wanted one in another two bedrooms. They do not ship these to my country from Amazon, so ordering one from the US and having my dad bring it back was the best option. The 3rd generation Echo Dot is the cheapest one available, and it cost $39 when I was ordering it, or you could get that together with a smart light bulb for only $30. (Ha, why is it cheaper with both together? I don't know.) But you could only get one of those. The Fouth Generation Echo Dots were the next cheapest, $49 for them, but you could get it together with a smart light bulb for $42. So of course I paid 3 extra dollars to upgrade from the 3rd Generation to the Fourth together with a smart light bulb.

My favorite author, Brandon Sanderson, came out with his latest book, the Lost Metal, and it was so new that you couldn't get it cheaper second hand from Better World Books, so I didn't buy it and was patient and my son's friend lent it to me. 
When renting a car, a few times I parked in free parking and then took the train into the city center instead of paying for parking.
I needed to see a kids' rheumatologist, but there are only 2 available in the entire country covered by my insurance, so I made an appointment with one of them and waited a few months to see her instead of paying privately. (It wasn't urgent. And often private has as long of a wait.) 

What frugal things have you done lately?

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