Monday, September 14, 2015

Frugal Successes and Failures: Monday 9/14/15



HAPPENINGS AROUND HERE TODAY:
  • Monday, Monday... it's sunny right now (8:25 a.m.) but predicted to be overcast and hot today with much rain.  But we have quite a bit of rain in the forecast for the rest of the week, we'll see if my little town actually gets any.  We seem to be in a microclimate and whenever a lot of rain has been predicted lately, it's totally missed us! With the weather cooling off by a couple of degrees, I really need to get in the garden and finish the weeding & mulching project and get to planting my seeds. I know the cardboard boxes on the front porch are starting to annoy us all :)

  •  Greg added coolant to his truck (the engine light had come on for him previously when the truck had ran out of coolant) but the light remained on. He drove to work and will stop by an auto parts store tonight to have them run the computer code check (free) so he can take it to a garage with the exact computer code, which will give him an idea of what the problem might be.  Meanwhile, i looked up his truck manual online (since he took it with him) and sent him links to the appropriate pages regarding the engine light (because I'm not sure that he'll read the manual).  He's driving 10 hours to his parents' house in a couple of weeks so it'd be nice if we could get the problem fixed before then...

  • My daughter and I agreed that she will go back to doing the dishes every other week in order to earn the $30 she needs to pay me her share of the car insurance.  She starts tonight, woohoo!  I was nice to her, though, and did last night's dishes first thing this morning so she only has a normal wash to do :)

  • The Swagbucks Team Challenge starts at noon EST today and I have to work hard at NOT earning SB this morning since I need to earn 400 of them during the Team Challenge to qualify for the Swag-Up. Actually, now that I have typed it, it makes no sense because I have a week to earn the 400 SB, which I'm sure I'll do pretty quickly so why not start earning right now? They count as points in my own account even if they don't count for the Team Challenge...  I think I'm overthinking things, sometimes.

FRUGAL SUCCESSES:
  • I packed leftovers for Greg to take to work. 

  • My daughter drove herself to school, saving me time and money (one fewer round-trip!).

  • I did 2 "super" loads of laundry. The first one was on cold/cold with vinegar as the softener and cheap laundry detergent and I hung the clothes outside: socks, undies, cleaning cloths and cloth napkins. I hung the polyester exercise clothes on hangers in my laundry room.  The second one (cotton clothing) was washed on warm/cold, only because my gasoline-splashed pants were in there and I figured that the warm water might help dissolve the gasoline.  They do say not to wash gasoline-soaked clothes in the washing machine because a spark could ignite them but since they were saturated with stain remover and then water, I felt OK washing them with the rest of my clothes. Hopefully not everything will come out smelling of gasoline!  I'll dry the pants outside and the rest will go in the dryer on the Auto Moisture Sensing setting.

  • I made 8 hard-boiled eggs for Greg's snacks this week and kept the water in a jug to water my indoor seedlings later on this week. 

  • I saved my middle son some money because he was going to stop by Racetrac to buy himself a PopTart for breakfast on his way to work but I suggested he just have Cocoa Puffs here, which he did. I offered to get him more groceries at no cost to him on Wednesday but he refused. I'm not sure of the reasoning there but hey, if he doesn't want me to spend money on him, I won't!

  • In straightening out the house, I found 3 loose pennies that I put in our change jar and a rubber band that went into my stash.

  • I finished the last of the Diet Coke bottle that I got for free on Saturday so I entered the cap code on MyCokeRewards.com and earned another 3 MCR points. I now have 51 paltry points!

  • I defrosted a package of pumpkin puree that I had frozen last Fall. I had made it with the $2.99 Jack'O Lanterns that I had bought at Save A Lot before Halloween.  I'll use it to bake Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread this afternoon. Do I add chocolate chips in most things that I bake? Well, yes, yes I do!

  • Mira from Sugru's Customer Service emailed me to make sure I had received their (free to me) replacement package.  I thanked her again and told her that I was thinking about making a hook to hold my new apple slicer since I don't have room for it in my drawers.  She sent me the link to instructions on how to make a hook with Sugru. How awesome is that company?  So I made one.  It has to cure for 24 hours so I will post pictures of the whole process tomorrow.

  • The e-newsletter that Dollar Tree sent me mentioned that they are hiring seasonal help right now so I forwarded the email to my daughter in case she would want to apply.  It's near the restaurant where she worked so much closer to our house than the theme parks.

  • The manager of the local Burger King emailed me to say that she "is looking into why there wasn't a survey" on my receipt and said she would be happy to offer me a free whopper for my comment.  However, I'm not sure if she meant "a free whopper because I sent a comment" and then I just need to show her email to get the free whopper or a free whopper if I fill out a comment aka survey?!  I hate it when people aren't more specific in their answers and we have to play the 10 question game.  So I emailed her back pointing out that I can't take a survey without a code so kindly please send me a survey code.  This time she replied even more obscurely about 2 sandwiches and that she would have a code for me in store (?).  So I'm going to print her email and stop by on Wednesday to see what the deal is. (and thanks to Gerlyn for trying to help me with this via email.  *waves at a new reader*).


  • Lunch was half the leftovers from last night's Southwestern Chicken Stew, the last 2 rosemary rolls, a quarter of cantaloupe, and the rest of the week raspberry tea that I had brewed several days ago.


  • I baked the pumpkin bread. I had planned no baking corn bread at the same time, but I didn't have enough sugar, not even to make the pumpkin bread. However, since I was adding chocolate chips to the recipe, I decided to use only 1 cup of sugar instead of 3.  I also used the homemade applesauce that I had made several weeks ago from apples that were going bad, instead of oil.

  • There was a bread end piece that had been kicking around the back of my fridge for over a week and no one was doing anything with it so I toasted it and turned it into bread crumbs. I'll use them tonight when I make tuna patties!
Yes, I burned the toast on purpose :)
  • When my daughter got home, I took my SUV to the library to drop off a couple of books that were due today.  There weren't any coupon inserts in the donation pile, but I found an issue of a magazine that I could use for... more recipes!


  • I took a Driscoll's Consumer Panel survey with the code from a box of berries bought back in July and earned another (2) $1.00/1 coupons for my Wednesday shopping trip. This week, I'm going to load up on strawberries, darn it. We ran out way too early in the week when I skipped them and just got the raspberries last week.

  • I earned 100 KFR points by entering bonus code PTS4CCLIPINISTAS in my Kellogg's Family Rewards account (thanks, TotallyTarget!).  I need to check out what Kellogg's cereal sales are going on this week to see if it's worth my redeeming points for $1.00/1 coupons. I'm hoping there are sales on Special K, somewhere, because we are completely out.


  • I got lots of (free) exercise today as I tried earning Swagbucks on my son's computer and on my laptop and my phone at the same time. I set up my laptop in the kitchen and my son's computer is in the next room, up a couple of stairs and I had to go to his PC to click on something every 90 seconds for quite a while.  I'd better have buns of steel by the end of this team challenge! In case you're wondering why I didn't just take the laptop and set it up near the computer... I did it on purpose so I could get exercise, hahaha!

  • Greg's employer is offering us free admission for Greg and up to 3 guests to the Orlando Interactive Experience Festival (OiX) in Orlando at the beginning of October. I think we might take our son to this over the weekend. My daughter would have been interested in attending (she wants to do something with digital arts or game design) but she has an FFA retreat that whole weekend. Poop. It's a $389 value per person should we want to attend everything the whole 5 days.  Well, we don't but we might take them up on the $35 per person badge to attend the Gaming Experience...Update: never mind, he decided he didn't want to go after all. 

  • Dinner tonight was tuna patties and I made pasta instead of salad. Easy and a crowd pleaser.  We have leftovers for Greg's lunch tomorrow too.

WE SPLURGED ON:

  • Our son bought lunch from school since we allow him to do this one a week and he now remembers his lunch code number.

  • My daughter packed a lunch for school... but she forgot to take it with her. I texted her to ask if she would be buying lunch (I had put money in her lunch account but the cafeteria is a zoo at lunchtime) or if she would just wait until she was home to eat lunch (she comes back before 2 p.m.).  I have a feeling that she will just wait. I was wrong. She bought lunch from the cafeteria.  She'll eat the lunch she packed tomorrow.


HOWEVER, WE FAILED IN THE FOLLOWING WAYS, BUT LEARNED SOME LESSONS:
  • CVS keeps on urging me to give "prescription access" to my loyalty card and is now offering me $10 in Extracare Bucks to do this. It's tempting... but I also think it's creepy.  Publix doesn't track my prescription history with a loyalty program (although they do track it in other ways, I'm sure) and that's where I have our few prescriptions filled anyway. It's much closer to my house and their prices have been better than CVS. I had a bad interaction with a CVS pharmacist years ago and I bear grudges so I will not be linking my Extracare card to their prescription program. So I'm losing $10.  OH WELL.

Did you have any frugal successes or failures today? Please do tell!

5 comments:

  1. Its been pouring here on and off for two days solid, yuk! I love the look of the chocolate chip pumpkin loaf. Looks so good as usual. Xx

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    Replies
    1. Oh rain for you is probably cold rain too, eh? Does that make your walking to and from school miserable?

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  2. The pumpkin loaf (with chocolate chips) looks so yummy. Found a recipe tonight for an overnight breakfast casserole made up of bread cubes and pureed pumpkin. I think I will try that tomorrow.

    It would be nice if your daughter got the job at "Dollar Tree". I would be spending all my pay cheque in the store, I'm afraid. Ha. Love that store. Another place I would love to work, but would be deadly, would be Michael's. I wouldn't get rich working there.

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    Replies
    1. Ha! You and her, both! If she got a job at Michael's she'd have to pay THEM instead of getting a paycheck. As an artist, she's already spending way too much money there :)

      I didn't know you had Dollar Tree in Canada. I used to read a Canadian blog where she raved about Dollarama. Do you shop there? Is it awesome?

      Let us know how your breakfast casserole turns out. That sounds delicious!

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  3. Yes, we have both Dollarama and Dollar Tree here....mind you, the prices were moved up to $1.25 a few years ago in both chain stores. But I love them both. We also have independent Dollar Stores in some of the smaller towns, and I love to check them out. Sometimes they contain different items you don't find in the other bigger stores.

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