View Full Version : February Frugals!

2-7-17, 5:22am
Wow, Feb 7th and no Frugals thread, what a bunch of slackers we are! I don't have anything epic to share, but I did want to get the ball rolling. We came in within budget on groceries this week, which is always do-able (I set a pretty generous budget) but we still fail all too often.
I spent yesterday with my sister and we went to some stores, but all I spent was $2.50 on used books at the library (I donated a few while I was there as well, two books in and 3 books out so I'm ahead on that equation).
DH loves Monopoly (which his DW does not) and he was recently lamenting the fact that he never, ever gets to play. I told him I would play it with him some day, and he said, "well don't wait too long, I'm in my fifties and not getting any younger you know!" I was helping my sister go through some of her stuff yesterday and she had a Monopoly game in the closet. I brought it home and played a game with DH last night and he was so pleased! So that was frugal fun (I actually kind of enjoyed it since I hadn't played in about 20 years) and it saved me from buying a set. That's a good example of something that can be shared among households, since it would probably be a pretty rare family who is using their monopoly set all the time.

2-7-17, 7:34am
We just sold our 2008 jeep and bought a 2013 volt. We don't drive a lot so our jeep had low miles and held its value. We have $4000 left over to invest in index funds, and our fuel bill will now be about 20-25% of what it was before. And my husband and I share this one car - he walks a few blocks to work and I drive two miles to work.

2-7-17, 7:35am
(We can charge at no cost in our apartment's parking garage.)

2-7-17, 10:09am
It's been enforced frugality lately, since one of my employers just decided to start paying us nearly two weeks later than usual, which REALLY messes with our cash flow. We've dealt with it by postponing purchases, shopping in our pantry and freezer, and finding temporary work-arounds.

For example, I really wanted a plant for my desk--I work at home and desperately need some greenery for visual and mental relief. I ended up starting a cutting from an existing succulent, which I can transplant into an old pot I have in the garage. Not the plant I wanted, but something's better than nothing!

2-8-17, 6:47am
Eating at home. Working on the freezer and the pantry. Zero food waste? Not quite-had to toss 1 meal's worth of salad mix that was getting slimy.

Yesterday I ate a protein bar for breakfast-I have no idea how long it's been in the pantry.....then I thawed 3 bricks of beef broth that were collecting "freezer ice" and made barley beef soup using up the dregs of green onions and celery in the fridge as well as several cups of chopped carrots. Add some sourdough bread/butter and called it dinner!

Lunches this week are leftover jasmine rice from last week mixed with freshly cooked black beans and our homemade salsa.

I've got a few mandarin oranges left in the fruit bowl that have now aged to hard skins. That generally means they no longer taste good either. I'll take them for a morning snack and see if my theory is right or wrong.

Tonight dinner will be roasted broccoli (getting old) and carrots with grilled salmon. AND some more of that sourdough bread/butter.

2-8-17, 6:15pm
Gardnr: often that citrus still has decent juice potential. DH often juices our past prime citrus - his wife is too lazy :)

2-8-17, 7:56pm
Tonight's dinner was rice and black-eyed peas.
Been eating a lot of grilled cheese sandwiches this month.

2-11-17, 9:41am
I'm about to use some sourdough bread for french toast. Bought the bread on Monday?

2-11-17, 7:45pm
Yum french toast! I am totally into waffles lately.

2-11-17, 11:05pm
Dinner was more of the aging sourdough. Toasted it, schmeared with pesto and topped with 3d old BBQ salmon and some fresh baby greens. Fabulous!!!

2-16-17, 7:58pm
It just recently occurred to me that I haven't bought any clothes yet this year, which is a record of sorts for me, although the minimalists in the group may shake their heads in disbelief. I've also had 2 extra WFH/snow days in the past 2 weeks, so that saved me bus/train fare.
We really need to invest in some home improvements this year, so we're trying to keep a tighter rein on non-essential spending.

2-19-17, 4:32pm
Well here's an un-frugal for you. We had come in well within budget on groceries yesterday, but today we needed to run out for carrots and celery for the chicken stew DH is making. Well carrots and celery and just a few other things somehow added up to $25! I reviewed the receipt and the bag of grapes I bought for healthy snacking were almost $9 - yikes! On the plus side, we have convinced ourselves that these are the most delicious grapes EVER, and we are committed to not wasting a single one. :)

2-21-17, 5:19pm
Went to the grand opening of the new Joann fabric store (they moved from outside of the mall to inside the mall). Got batting (40% off) and flannel fabric (60% off) for a quilt I am making for my niece. I was going to have to buy this stuff anyway so the timing was perfect. Did NOT buy anything else in spite off all the other great sales. Didn't even look!

After that we went to the China Buffet in the mall and had lunch for both of us for $8.40. This is an all you can eat place but we always get it to go because 1) we don't want to eat ALL we can eat and come home over full and 2) we usually pay less for 2 moderate size meals (sold by the pound) than it costs for one all you can eat meal consumed inside the restaurant. That $8.40 also included a drink we shared. Restuarant meals are often so huge, we find we can often split one and both feel quite full.

2-21-17, 5:53pm
Cheap supper- rice, small can of green chilies, leftover chicken , sour cream, half and half and a cup of grated cheese...yummy, comforting food. I made the rice in the microwave, added the chilies, chicken, sour cream and half and half, heated for 3 minutes in the microwave, added cheese and did 3 minutes at 70% . Easy, cheap, one corning ware 2 qt. dish.

Chicken lady
2-21-17, 6:07pm
I hit my February goal for groceries (I have $25 left to spend at the farmer's market on thursday). It's a very generous goal because dh feels that food is one of the areas one should splurge and it includes organic wherever possible and alcohol, but I'm very pleased with the cuts I've made.

I quit soda/juice/flavored water i'm now drinking only coffee (that actually comes out of our "entertainment budget" even though we make it at home) water, goat milk, and a little tea.

i'm focusing on cooking from scratch and seasonal vegetables and using everything I buy, and I'm (mostly) avoiding things like candy and snack food - dh won't give up chips completely.

i've also done this while cooking dh breakfast every day (no more mcmuffins), packing dh lunch an average of 4 days a week (the other days lunch is on the company), and cutting back a little on dinners out/take out (used to be once a week, now 2x a month.)

I'm going to see if I can cut it another 10% in March.

2-22-17, 7:49am
Hi All

This month has been full of frugals sorry I have not been on to post them (some health issues have been distracting me) and a few big
NOT frugals like a new Tablet and a Gym membership but, I feel these are tangibles, like things that
improve my life....I am happy with them and the many frugals make them possible...lol

2-22-17, 9:45am
Frugal here was both frugal and non-frugal--nonfrugal because who really needs crystal but I found a bunch of crystal at Goodwill for 99 cents a piece and now have 8 matching champagne glasses (yay!) and 8 wine/small matching water glasses and about 6 more that don't match but are really pretty. Also found a tin container of the kind I collect for my ribbons and thread (so they match) and a nifty German lebkuchen tin for my postcard collection. Those were 1.99 a piece.

early morning
2-23-17, 12:04am
Well, once again I'm scratching for pennies while the dollars fly... so be it. On the penny front - I put new elastic in a pair of work pants, so they are back in the rotation. Found a 4-cup coffee pot in the basement, which is tiding us over until I can pick up a new 12 cup one my sister had stashed in her garage. Our old 12-cup machine has been dying for the past few weeks, despite cleaning w/vinegar and much cajoling. I was ready to bite the bullet and buy new, but Dsis was shifting stuff around and uncovered one that she had brought back from Mom's. Dsis lives alone and says she will never need a 12 cup pot. We, OTOH, make multiple pots per day. I'll take the 4 cup to my room at work. It won't save any money, but it may help my sanity quite a bit! DD and I are still taking coffee and lunch to work almost every day. I have several luncheon meeting a month, and always try to bring home part of my meal. Working on the things we need to do to offset our health ins costs at work - I have all of my items completed, DH still has to do a few things and I need to enter them into the computer for him. It's a PIA, but significant savings, so it's worth it. That's about it from here!

2-23-17, 6:07am
I am making cat toys for our local shelter and was going to buy some fleece on sale. Then I thought, the cats dont mind used and I wonder whether any of our thrift stores have any fleece blankets or such. SCORE. Two large pieces of unused fleece as if it came from the retail store. Priced 3.99 and 2.99 or about 20% of retail. When I got to the cash register, it was a green tag that was 1/2 price. So I can make around 300-400 toys with what I have and about $4 in fleece.

Then I was telling the shelter on Facebook and someone got in touch with me and I may have 5 yards coming for the project. It was meant to be.

2-23-17, 4:20pm
Woo Hoo! Found a mid calf length down coat from the Company Store at the thrift store today on the clearance rack. Needs washing, a tiny repair at one pocket edge and a button sewn on. Price: 50 cents!

2-23-17, 5:07pm
After several years of buying good deli meat (Boar's Head) for lunch sandwiches, DH and I agreed to simply buy chicken or turkey breasts (on sale if poss), roast them ourselves and thin-slice them instead. Cha-ching! Lots of savings there.

2-25-17, 12:27am
Totally free dinner day for us! I volunteer as a free tax preparer at our community center. The community center has a commercial grade kitchen that people can rent to prepare food for catering. The carterers came back from their event/lunch with lots of leftovers and invited us tax preparers to help ourselves. They had zip lock bags and were nice enough to put 4 mexican rice/chicken stuffed bells peppers into one for me to take home. (this will be 2 meals for us) Then hubbie came home from his volunteer job at the food bank with ready to stirfry veggie mix and a chocolate fudge cake! Since the food bank doesn't open again til Tuesday and all this stuff was already a day past its sell-by date they can't hold it over so it's up for grabs to the volunteers at the end of the day. We love our volunteer jobs!

2-25-17, 7:48pm
Breakfast: scrambled eggs and sourdough purchased yesterday.

For lunch we finished up the Big bin of salad mix and last of the tomatoes for a lunch salad. both purchased 12d ago.

Dinner? Roasted brussel sprouts purchased that same day and chicken breasts pulled from the freezer. Slice of sourdough bought yesterday.

Wohoo! A Saturday with no restaurant meal.

2-26-17, 7:06am
We got together with my sister and a friend at sister's place last night. We brought the ingredients and DH made a pizza and a calzone, so it was a pretty frugal way to get together for dinner.