Monday, April 6, 2015

Daily Frugal Failures and Successes: Monday 4/6/15



HAPPENINGS AROUND HERE TODAY:
  • Spring Break is over and Greg and the kids went back to work and school.

  • Despite the AC and sometimes the fan too, we're still getting too hot upstairs at night... we love our comfy light flannel bottom sheet (we don't use top sheets) but I think it's time to put it away until winter and start using our cotton sheet again. This should help... I think?

  • I used my recumbent bike in the morning and spent the time clipping the coupons that I had printed over the last few days, while rewatching an episode of "The Americans, Season 1" that I had already seen, on Amazon Prime (and I never get tired of saying that we got our current membership for free after signing up for our American Express card).

FRUGAL SUCCESSES:
  • I packed Greg a lunch to take to school. My daughter packed herself a lunch as well. Our son will buy lunch, as he does on Mondays.

  • My daughter drove herself to school, saving me a roundtrip (i.e. gas and time).

  • I dehydrated the 2 quarts of strawberries that I still had in the fridge.

  • I took 2 Driscoll's surveys with the codes from the 2 containers, which earned me 4 more $0.75/1 Driscoll's coupons. Since the printable coupon links are good for 60 days, I put an alert on my Google calendar to make sure and print next month (if I haven't printed them by then) since I will be out of the country over the summer and I had already printed coupons last week so I don't need to print them just as yet (they have a 30-day expiration date once I print them).

  • When I cut up the corn bread that I baked yesterday in order to freeze it, one of the loaves was very crumbly.  I collected all the crumbs and this morning I toasted them and then added them to my jar of homemade breadcrumbs.

  • I washed 2 plastic freezer bags in order to reuse them and also saved 2 lengths of plastic wrap that had been used to cover leftovers.

  • Not necessarily frugal but I noticed that Greg left some change lying around on a counter, so I gathered the coins and threw them in the box were I keep loose change... I'll take it to CoinStar once it's full. It'll take a while since I rarely use cash. I'd rather earn the rewards on our credit cards since it's free money to us.

  • I made pretzel buns for our turkey burgers that I will serve at dinnertime.  The burgers were made with ground turkey that I had gotten on 50% off clearance for just $1.89 for 20 oz.  Instead of making sweet potato fries, "baked" them in the microwave.

  • I harvested some fresh marjoram (this herb, planted from seed, has been such a success!) and put 3 sprigs with my basil cuttings to see if it will propagate in water too (the basil stems are starting to develop root nubblings) and I will dry the rest on my windowsill. I used a tray made of an upcycled cat litter jug (it's been washed, obviously).

  • The parsley seeds that I started indoors recently have started germinating. The basil and cilantro are well on their way and I will plant them outdoors in about a month, I think (maybe sooner for the basil).

  • For my lunch I used a Thai Tuna Starkist pouch that I had gotten for free at Walmart (after coupon and paying for the tiny balance with a gift card) on slices of my homemade bread and some grapes (bought at $0.50/lb at Save A Lot last Wednesday).

  • I called the pediatrician's office to inquire about the bill they sent me last week. I had forgotten that we now have a deductible to meet each time so the good news is that the $38 goes towards our deductible.  The 2 different influenza tests that appear on the bill are the 2 swabs from the same test... so we get billed twice. I was going to mail them a check but then I just realized that I should be able to charge this to our Health FSA debit card so I did that.  When I logged into our FSA account to see if previous charges had been processed, I saw that by putting just $400 in the account this year, we're saving $120 in taxes.

  • I drove to the post office to mail the book I sold on Half.com and also send my older boys' bank statements to sender... I've been on their case for 2 years and 1 year, respectively, to change their address on their bank account but they still haven't... so I'm sending everything back. I also stopped by the library and returned a book that was due today and picked up a DVD that I had requested.

  • My SUV had been beeping to warn me that it was time for an oil change, but I checked the sticker that was put on my windshield last time I got it done and I still have about 3,000 miles to go (I use synthetic oil and my car was built before the guidelines for oil changes were adjusted) so I reset the warning to zero (and saved myself about $80. That's how much a synthetic oil change costs with a large SUV, minimum!)

  • I checked the Target Cartwheel app and added 2 new offers: 5% on fresh berries (yippee, that one hadn't shown up for a few months!) and 10% off on Purina cat litters... since I still have $4.00 manufacturer coupons and TotallyTarget is reporting that the price on the 23 lb boxes might have dropped to $9.99, I would pay $4.74 + tax for 23 lbs (after Redcard discount) vs. $3.99 for 14 lbs at Aldi.

  • I baked a loaf of bread for sandwiches tomorrow.

HOWEVER, WE FAILED IN THE FOLLOWING WAYS, BUT LEARNED SOME LESSONS:
  • I had to compost 2 moldy strawberries because I waited too long to dehydrate them and forgot to rinse them in diluted vinegar.

  • Greg needed to mail a check to his parents and used UPS through his workplace. We were charged about $14.  He thought they used Fedex... and I loaded a $5 off $10 offer to his American Express. Instead of not mailing the check today so I could take it to the Fedex office on Wednesday, he mailed it anyway :(  Also, I think using the Post Office's Priority Mail would have probably been even cheaper.
Did you have any frugal successes or failures today? Please do tell!

2 comments:

  1. I "saved" 2/3 of a full pineapple that was starting to go soft. In the past, I probably would've just chucked it/composted it.

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    Replies
    1. Yay! These small actions end up saving you a lot of money, in the long-run. I know that since keeping track of my Food Waste, I have "saved" a lot of items that I would have otherwise thrown away. Good for you!

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