Sunday, August 16, 2015

Frugal Failures and Successes: Sunday 8/16/15



HAPPENINGS AROUND HERE TODAY:
  • Happy Sunday! What is your idea way of spending your Sunday?  Mine is... at home, of course!  It used to be that I really enjoyed sipping on my coffee while I printed my coupons as the rest of my family was still sound asleep, but right now I'd really like the weather to be cooler so I could sit on my back patio, listen to the birds sing, watch nature and enjoy my coffee before reading a good book.  Patience, patience... cooler weather will be here in... February? Argh.

  • In the meantime, I turned on my favorite smooth jazz radio (WLOQ) on my IHeartRadio app via the Roku, got my coffee, and printed coupons.  I like finding them but I've been dreading clipping and especially sorting them. I print way too many coupons.  I know, I know, I keep saying that. But it's true. Maybe I ought to scale back. Just sayin'.

  • I'm still in my "reorganizing everything"mode.  This morning I decided to change things in the bedroom by:
    • getting rid of the old, bulky but working just fine TV that we never watch. We'll have to drop it off at the dump since the local thrift stores won't take analog TV anymore. If we do want to watch TV in our bedroom, I'll just move the small flat screen that's facing my exercise bike up to the bedroom for the day and set it up on the small bookshelf we have facing the bed.  I only watch TV up there if I'm sick and wanting to be alone, which is only about once a year.
    • getting rid of the nightstand that serves as the TV stand.  It's fine for my undies and socks but I can't put my T-shirts in there too and I want all my clothes together on the same side of the bedroom. I was hoping we could use it in the corner next to Greg's desk since he wants storage there but it's 26" wide and the space only allows for a 20" piece of furniture (21" at the most).  I'll take it up to the attic, my son might need it for his apartment in January.
    • getting a tall chest for my clothes. My daughter agreed to let me have one of the two she has in her bedroom since most of her clothes are on the floor, usually (teens!). She really needs to be more organized but drawers don't seem to be her thing and her closet is so small that I couldn't fit in there (we live in an old house). So, don't laugh, but I'm thinking laundry baskets... well, the clothes are on the floor anyway so at leasts she'd put them in baskets.  A minor improvement?  I'll run it by her. But this week, we are decluttering her room. OMZ she is so messy, err creative. Well, no. Messy.

  • Greg and our son spent more time playing Axis and Allies this afternoon (Greg got his butt kicked yesterday so he needed to take his revenge!). I love that they were both away from their screens for several hours. Unlike me :)

  • I swept the kitchen and realized... oh my... I need to pretty much take everything out of there so I can properly sweep and mop.  That means the chairs and all the small cabinets on wheels and wired shelves that I have everywhere since we have a very large kitchen but no storage space or counter space. It's going to be a major project, best left for when everybody is at school/work. And I'm not looking forward to it. I also ought to pull my fridge away from the wall and vacuum the coils. The main problem? Cat hair.  Those darn cats and their darn hair. Ugh.

  • My daughter came home from her vacation time at her dad's.  School starts in a week and there are school meetings to attend, forms to be turned in, etc. She's been technically back at school for a couple of weeks, though, since she has already started her online French II class. She's no slacker, that one, not like her mom :)

FRUGAL SUCCESSES:
  • I earned my 3rd $25 gift card of the month from Swagbucks today!  I was hesitating between picking a Home Depot card or an Amazon card, but I went with Amazon in the end. What a surprise...

  • When I redeemed my 2,500 SB for the gift card, I received a 150 SB rebate, for which I had qualified a couple of weeks ago. However, that doesn't count toward my daily goal so I'm running SBTV on my phone and nGage on my laptop and trying to rack as many points as possible.  My son also lent me his phone so I downloaded the MovieCli.ps app, logged in with my account, and I'll be earning SB on his phone as well :)

  • I used rainwater to water my indoor seedlings and zombie plants.

  • I printed coupons from my usual sources (coupons.com via Swagbucks, smartsource, redplum, Target) and other sources (Cvs.com, MamboSprouts) and uploaded digital coupons to my Publix, Winn Dixie, and Walgreens digital wallets.

  • I'd really like to take advantage of the Walgreens Balance Rewards promo going on for the next couple of days (spend at least $10 and get triple the points!) because there is another promo going on whereby if I spend $30, I'll get 6,000 BR and I think I should be able to stack them. However, I really don't have $30 worth of stuff that I need from Walgreens.  I want to get the Clearasil Ultra for $6.99 and the Colgate toothpaste for $3.00 but I was hoping to print the Clearasil MIR from their website since I probably won't get any free coupon inserts from the library this week (the rebate is in the paper) but their link doesn't work so I tweeted them and asked them to fix the link.  I might try to go to Walgreens tomorrow since we're trying to have a No Drive Day today and my daughter will be driving my car tomorrow anyway.

  • I baked a small loaf of bread with the remainder of the dough I made last week, and I made another container of Artisan Bread in 5 minutes a Day basic dough.


  • Right after this was done, I made the strawberry version of the German Apricot Cake with frozen strawberries that I partially defrosted in the microwave.  By the time I had made the dough, the oven was at the proper temp (350 F).
I'm not a good cake decorator... not enough patience!
  • In the meantime I defrosted 2 large chicken breasts in the microwave, which I baked in the oven after the cake was finished baking. It was hot in the kitchen but I needed to do these things and I'm glad I did them one after the other so I could take advantage of the hot oven. The breasts will be used by my daughter this week in salads and sandwiches.

  • Wow, I don't know how she swung that but the blogger who writes at Couponers United beat IHeartPublix for publishing next week's Publix deals, LOL.  So I jotted down the deals that I might be taking advantage of, starting on Thursday. I love that these bloggers do the work for us, it saves time. Unfortunately, it doesn't always save money because then the temptation is great to grab these items because they're free or cheap or what not... and that's how I ended up with things that I'm now sending to the thrift store after having spent time, gas and money to get them. No more. I've been very good (if I do say so myself!) at mostly limiting myself to deals for things that I actually need or will use. And that's why I sometimes don't have a "daily freebie" to post. So, for instance, I won't be getting the 2 Suave deodorants that are advertised as a $0.09 moneymaker. Why? Well, I have deodorant in my stash already and they're taxable items anyway so there goes my money maker opportunity.

  • Greg wanted some storage cabinet/shelf for the small space next to his desk to store his video games and other equipment that's in a large bin right now.  Since the nightstand wouldn't fit, he suggested Ikea. I was all set to go right there and then but since it's an hour away with tolls, he didn't want to go.  He suggested that he could make something but I nixed that idea since we're not talking The New Yankee Workshop here and I want something that look OK, even if it's crappy furniture.  I actually did find something on the Ikea website that looked OK and was $49 but they didn't guarantee that it was in stock at our store AND they wanted $168 in shipping fees if I wanted it delivered. Whaaaaat?  No. Checked Target.com and Amazon but neither had anything in the width that I wanted.  I finally found something on Walmart.com, got free shipping and will get 5% back for using the Discover Deals shopping portal (so about $4.26) and Greg is happy, which is priceless.
Uh, this isn't my house. I wish.

  • For lunch Greg had a PBJ since the ham I had taken out of the freezer was still frozen and a yogurt. Our son had a PBJ as well.  I had half of the leftover cabbage, sausage and potatoes from several nights ago. So good!  I also had 1/4 of a cantaloupe and the last piece of German Apricot Cake since Greg didn't want any and our son had eaten his slice for breakfast :)


  • Greg told me he looked at our son's desk chair that had broken earlier this week to see if he could fix it, but that it wasn't worth the trouble. We decided to take the seat portion of it to the dump but keep the wheeled part of it, in case we need it for another project.  

  • In the afternoon, I was delighted to come across episodes of Simon & Simon on Cozi TV, a great over the air TV channel.  I hadn't watched that show in years!  Yes, it's corny but I always liked the actors and it reminds me of Sunday afternoons spent at home when I was in my first year of college, watching American TV shows on French TV, waiting for the time to go to the train station and go back to my university. We don't have cable but there always seems to be something interesting to watch on OTA TV!  Do you have cable?

  • I deleted the rest of my book inventory on Half.com.  Truth is, without a car (my daughter will be driving mine for a few weeks) and with the weather being as stormy as it is right now, it's not going to be convenient for me to get to the post office within the prescribed deadlines if I sell anything. Also, I'm really not making enough money for the hassle. So I'll just donate the rest of the books to thrift stores.

  • Well, we managed to squeeze one more No Drive Day in!  From now on, we most likely won't have another one until my daughter moves our after graduation... in 2 years.  Weep. (uh, both for the fact that I will miss my daughter very much and that we won't be able to save on gas and car wear and tear until then, lol!).


  • We ended up not doing "Leftovers Night" last night but we did tonight as we had the rest of the Ratatouille Bake for dinner. There was enough for the 4 of us and also to pack a lunch for Greg tomorrow.  For dessert, we had pieces of the German Strawberry Cake that I had baked earlier.

  • My daughter brought me FIVE Coke Rewards caps from her dad's house. That's 15 MCR points, woohoo!

  • It absolutely poured tonight so I won't have to water the garden again tomorrow :)

  • I met my 2nd Swagbucks Daily Goal!  I think this is the 3rd or 4th day in a row? I should have quite a bit of bonus SB coming my way in September. Woohoo!


WE SPLURGED ON:
  • AC... since my daughter came home tonight, I had to lower the temperature in that part of the house and close the vents in the kitchen so her room would be properly cooled off. No electric savings these next few months, I'm afraid?

  • A bookshelf for Greg (see my long paragraph above) from Walmart.com: it will fit next to its desk (it's actually a cube organizer and we got a set of 2 cubes too, we didn't have to drive all the way to Ikea (1 hour each way with tolls and no guarantee that what we want is actually in stock, apparently). Since my order qualified for free shipping, I also ordered the Dungeons & Dragons master tile set that I wanted for when we have D&D Family Game Night. It was $14.02 or less than half price what Amazon wants for it (and I will also get 5% back from Discover Deals.)


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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