Saturday, August 8, 2015

Frugal Failures and Successes: Saturday 8/8/15



HAPPENINGS AROUND HERE TODAY:
  • Another cloudy day here in Central Florida. It looked like it was going to storm at about noon but it never did. I'm going to need to check on the self-watering bins tomorrow and make sure that those where there are volunteer plants are still full.

  • While mowing the backyard, Greg bumped the bin where I had observed all the tiny tadpoles yesterday and the bin broke down even further and all the tiny tadpoles fell to the ground. Tadpolicide :(

  • Pretty much no pictures today. I didn't do much... but once again I didn't spend any money or gas :)

  • We received our son's new gaming PC today and everything seems to be working great. I reminded Greg that he needed to figure out how to deregister the Office 2010 license off the old PC and install it on the new one so our son can finish his summer reading project before school starts!  Hopefully he will do that tomorrow. I really don't want to have to get Office 365 and pay a yearly license fee. Ugh.

FRUGAL SUCCESSES:
  • I cut my own bangs last night.

  • Also last night, the cats finally played with the laser toy a little... however, they played much more with the 3 strands of knitting wool that I dug out of my craft drawer! You mean that I didn't need to spend $20 on an automatic laser toy?!

  • I had told my son that I would make him bread this morning so I fired up the breadmaker first thing in the morning and then set up about calculating the cost of making bread while using several recipes. That took a while because I'm so bad at math!  I'll post about it soon.


  • Greg mowed our backyard, which is much thriftier than paying someone to do it :)


  • Greg asked me to make him jalapeƱo soup for lunch. I defrosted a huge boneless chicken breast, cut half of it into strips, and pan-fried them. I used 6 small jalapeƱos that I had harvested last week and a ripe avocado from Save A Lot. We both had some for lunch and we have some leftovers for tomorrow. I also had the Zucchini Cheesy Bites leftovers from last night, as well as a small salad that was leftover from dinner from 2 nights ago.


  • Despite swearing I wasn't going to take any more Swagbucks surveys, I took 3 of them this morning and earned 125 SB:)  I am missing 50 SB, however. I did email Customer Service but haven't heard back from them yet.  As of 9 p.m. tonight, I have 2,337 SB so I should be able to order another $25 Amazon gift card tomorrow and get my 150 SB rebate that I earned during the Survey Soiree event last week.  Woohoo:)  Also, I exceeded my 2nd Daily Goal today, despite all my problems and qualified for a 23 SB bonus.  I also qualified for a 25 SB bonus for my 7 Day Winning Streak (because I reached my first Daily Goal every day for 7 days straight). It'll go up to 100 SB if I make it to 14 days.

  • I fixed my own computer problems!  I was having problems with some Swagbucks pages not displaying properly and also with Bing Rewards not computing my credits and it was frustrating me most of the morning. Everything else seemed to work fine!  After a while, I cleared my browsing data off Chrome and that fixed my problems. Yay!

  • Today was No Drive Day #22!  My original goal was to have 24 of those in 2015 so I'm glad we're on our way to accomplishing it :)  It sounds stupid (it did to Greg at first) but just declaring that a day is going to be a "No Drive Day" really helps us with being frugal because we remind each other of it... it means that small errands or emotional spending/retail therapy get put on the back burner and that we don't go get take-out food either.  Nowadays, Greg is the first one to point out that if I don't drive to the library or to Ace Hardware to pick up more potting soil right away, we could be having a No Drive Day... and I certainly appreciate the reminder!


  • We accomplished "No Drive Day" by making good use of our computers (gaming, blogging...) and Netflix, lol!  I finally got Greg to watch a few episodes of "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" with me and we laughed a lot, and then I figured that I would check out this "Daredevil" series (another Netflix original) that a lot of teens  and young adults are raving about and, frankly, it was boring and I don't think we'll watch more than the first 2 episodes. Greg didn't like it either.


  • Dinner was simple: I got a box of Hamburger Helper out of the pantry (less than $1.00 at Save A Lot several months ago), threw in a lb of cooked ground beef (bought on sale at Aldi a month ago for $2.79/lb) and about 1/2 a cup of "Mexican-blend" grated cheese (I had grated Monterey Jack and Mild Cheddar together, bought at $1.59 each at Aldi and used maybe $1.00 worth of cheese). It made 3 large servings and it wasn't bad despite being an unusual flavor. I have another box in my pantry so I'm relieved that Greg and our son ate it just fine :) I served fresh bread with it but no veggies (bad mom!).


  • I redeemed 7,000 points from our Mastercard Rewards program in exchange for a $50 gift card from Home Depot, that I will use to fund part of my self-watering bins beautification project (see Splurges).


WE SPLURGED ON:
  • Using the dishwasher... I ran two very full loads today and I've finally caught up with the dishes.

  • Not splurging yet but thinking about it... I want to buy some vinyl lattice to have Greg build me a little enclosure for my self-watering bins so they're a little more... dressed up, shall we say?  I was thinking about having him make me something like this (see below).  He pointed out that, while it looks very nice, our weather and crappy soil (sand) means that the white fence wouldn't remain white very long so I found some hunter's green vinyl lattice that I could order and I'm thinking we could use pressure and bug-treated corner posts that we could paint hunter's green too. The wheels are turning... It's frivolous but I'm tired of our backyard looking crappy. I'm probably also going to paint the concrete blocks that I used as border for my in-ground vegetable beds so it looks a little nicer too.


HOWEVER, WE FAILED IN THE FOLLOWING WAYS, BUT LEARNED SOME LESSONS:
  • No failures today!
Did you have any frugal successes or failures today? Please do tell!

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