Five frugal things that I have done this week

I work hard to save my family money everyday.  I shop the sales (always with a list!), price match, coupon and cook from scratch as much as possible.  We reuse and re-purpose and up-cycle as much as we can.  So, I should have more than five frugal things that I have done to save money, stretch the household budget and reserve resources everyday.  Some days I do.  Other days I do not.  But, always in the back of my mind, I’m thinking up better and more cost-effective ways to run our family and manage our budget.  So, with that in mind, here are five frugalicious things that I have done this week:

1) Hung our laundry to dry inside (I have been doing this for a couple of months now, since Mr. K.B. built a killer drying rack for me.  I have not used our dryer once and it has cut our Hydro bill by at least $30 a month – sweet!)

I love this rack.  It folds flat for easier storage, holds at least two loads of laundry at a time and will dry two twin-sized comforters at once.  It is just the best!  :)

I love this rack. It folds flat for easier storage, holds at least two loads of laundry at a time and will dry two twin-sized comforters at once. It is just the best! 🙂

2) Prepared all meals at home, dinners made from scratch (lasagna, jerk chicken with rice, pork loin roast with pan gravy and veggies), lunches are leftovers and sandwiches etc, breakfasts are cereal, bananas and milk.  Snacks are fruit, veggies and yogurt.  It is amazing how much food you can buy and prepare for the cost of just ONE dinner out.

3) Took my pre-school aged girls (one is mine, the other I watch three days a week) to a free program at the local elementary school aimed at preparing them to enter Kindergarten in the fall.  It is an excellent program, I highly recommend checking to see if your local area has a similar program if you have babies heading to kindergarten soon.

4) I re-wore my yoga pants (*snort* yes, I wear yoga pants even though the very thought of actually doing yoga makes my hair hurt.  And yes, I am aware of the absurdity of wear yoga pants for everyday living, but they are comfy  and they fit.) Hell, I wear running shoes but would be hard pressed to tell you the last time that I actually ran. I’m a walking fashion contradiction (or disaster). Being at home with the kids means that unless one (or more) of them vomits on me or uses me in place of tissue (happens more often than I care to reveal), that I don’t really get my clothes dirty, so I can wear them more than once (undergarments excluded – ewwwww!).  Saves time and money because I’m not washing and hanging clothes unnecessarily.

running

5) Made use of some coupons for Garnier Body 7-day lotion which resulted in getting purchasing six bottles for $11.14 (including HST), instead of $20.14, the “sale” price, that is a 55% savings.  Anytime I get purchase things that our family uses, eats or needs for 50% or greater off the retail or sale price, I’m a happy mama.  (Oh, and by the way, the Garnier Body Intensive 7 days lotion line is FABULOUS.  It is my new ‘go to’ lotion for dry skin, I have tried them ALL and this is the first one that has made a difference for me.  Wal-Mart – $2.97 Rollback right now, SDM had a tear pad coupon $3 WUB2 but there are other coupons for this product out there because it is still a relatively new line.)

Loooooove this lotion!  If you try it, let me know what you think of it!

Loooooove this lotion! If you try it, let me know what you think of it!

So, that’s a glimpse into my frugality this week. 😉

 

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I Bake My Own Bread Because I’m Just A Freak Like That

Between chemicals, price and convenience and household real estate, I bake our bread 9 times out of 10.  Freak or Frugalite?  You be the judge 😉

1.  The way I figure it is that my kids ingest enough chemicals from all of the non-organic fruit and vegetables, hormone and steroid injected meats and ‘special treats’ I feed them on a daily basis that their peanut butter sandwiches should be as free from chemicals, hormones or drugs as I can make them.

2.  On sale, with a coupon (unless it’s a FPC) the most I will pay for a commercial loaf of 100% whole wheat, whole grain bread is $1.00.  Cheap, smart or frugal, that’s up to you decide, but that is my price point and I really, really detest straying from it, since 6 out 7 members of our household are NOT gluten-free and really, really love sandwiches.  Homemade bread, all in, runs me about .20-.25 cents a loaf.  And it’s warm.  And it’s fresh.  And it’s so, so yummy.  I bake four loaves a week.  Buying four loaves (even at Food Basics, No Frills or Price Chopper) would cost me $8.00 (because I really never have four bread coupons a week and the *best* sale price averages $1.99 each.  Or, I can spend $.80 a week and bake it myself.  For me, it’s a no brainer.

3.  Baking bread is far easier and faster than it sounds.  It takes me the same amount of time to drive to the store, pick up a loaf of bread, stand in line, cut my eyes at the person in front of me in the Express lane for have 10 items, pay, and drive home as it does for me to mix the ingredients, kneed the dough, cover it for the first rise, prepare my bread pans and wash up my baking accoutrements.  The dough works its magic while I do other, very important things (Facebook, chocolate, daydreaming you know, really high priority stuff).  Then, in the amount of time it takes the average bear to find his keys, get to the car and pull out of the driveway (to go and buy more bread, of course!) I’ve divided the dough, rolled it out, rolled it up and plopped it in the previously prepared pan for a second, quicker rising.  At this point, we are about 30 minutes from baking and about an hour from smearing it with peanut butter, butter, Nutella – whatever your poison happens to be.

Fresh out the oven this morning, the first two of our four weekly loaves of carbohydrate-laden homemade heaven. Still nice and warm at lunchtime for some very serious peanut butter sandwich connoisseurs.

4.  Bread goes stale if not used up quickly.  Or frozen.  Freezer space is prime real estate when you shop the sales and mostly cook from scratch.  So, having four loaves of bread taking up all kinds of space in our freezer really doesn’t work for us.  Especially since I really can’t store anything on top of it or pushed up against it or around it.  Bread is soft and ridiculously diva-like about getting smushed.  Baking our own bread means that we really never have stale bread anymore and more important than that even: there is more room in the freezer for Momma’s private stash of Moose Tracks. *grin*

So there!  Take that June C.  Mwah!

So, Freak or Frugalite – I leave the evidence in your hands.  Judge away (but let me know either way, ’cause I want to know!)