Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Frugal Things That We Have Been Doing

Frugality is always on our minds as we do things. Can we do this cheaper without sacrificing quality? Is there a substitute? Is this something that we can do ourselves rather than hire someone? These are just some of the questions that silently go on in our heads as we approach any task.

Last week, we were really craving something sweet. Neither one of us eat much sugar. But once in a while we have to give in. Hubby said he would look for a recipe. That is always scary to me because Hubby loves to pick out recipes with many ingredients and sometimes an expensive ingredient that we will never use for anything else. So I reminded him that what ever he picked had to be something that I already had the ingredients for because I was not grocery shopping in February.

Later that day, he came out all smiles with a printed recipe in his hand. He says  to me, " I want these. My mom used to make them and I loved them." He hands me a recipe for macaroons. I quickly looked at  the list of ingredients and realized that we had them all. Hubby made them that night. The recipe only made 12 cookies so he says next time he would double it. But anyhow, with the exception that they were a little crisp on the bottoms, they were delicious and fit our craving. I forgot to take a picture before most of them got eaten but here is what is left.  

This is just one example of how we save every day. We didn't go to the grocery store to buy a prepackaged item to satisfy our craving. Hubby used what we had in the pantry and fridge. Since it was such a small recipe, he baked them in our toaster oven which saved energy. We had no packaging to throw in the garbage which helps keep my use of trash bags down to one a week. 

Another example of being creative and not spending money is all of the organizing that I have been doing around here. Most people would run out and buy all kinds of organizers. I went hunting in the basement to collect any containers that we hadn't been using. They won't look pretty in our cabinets but they serve the purpose without spending a lot of money. I  looked at ones that we were already using to see if they would serve another purpose that was much better than what we were using them for. These containers under the kitchen sink don't match but they serve the purpose. The purpose being to hold the things I use in the sink in one and the cleaners I use in the kitchen in the other. The wastebasket is my recyclable bin. Everything is nice and neat and at my fingertips.

I also reuse boxes that orders arrive in to corral things like I did in my gift closet. A big box holds gifts that are already wrapped and unwrapped gifts awaiting the occasions that they are for. When I wanted to corral my wrapping paper, I used a wastebasket that we already had. You don't always have to immediately think that you have to buy something for a project such as organizing the house. 

One thing that I have always wanted is my favorite cookbooks right at my fingertips. But I did not want to give up valuable cupboard space. So I re-purposed a wire basket that had held extra toilet paper. Now my cookbooks sit on my counter in the kitchen near my built in desk which makes meal planning easy for me. The toilet paper is on a shelf in the master closet which is off the master bathroom. 

Over the weekend, we had temps in the 60's. Hubby said he was going to take the car to the car wash. I told him that I would rather wash it in the driveway. So I gathered the hoses, buckets, car wash liquid, car wax, and sponges and did it myself. While I was at it, I cleaned the windows and cleaned the entire inside of the car. This would have cost Hubby $50.00 at the car wash. Now we are supposed to get 8-12 inches of snow overnight. So the car will be kept clean inside the garage.

These are just a few of the frugal things that we have been doing in the  past week. There are many more but they will be kept for another day.

So always think about what you are going to do before you do it. Ask yourself how frugally can I do it! Your net worth will show the results.


  1. Hi, Yum, I want some macaroons please :) We also don't eat much sugar. I've been using crushed raisins, instead of sugar in baking wherever I can (especially muffins). You won't even notice that the treats don't contain sugar, thanks to the natural sweetness in raisins. I just crush them in my blender, so that it can be spread evenly in the batter.

    I too, took advantage of the nice weather over the weekend and washed windows. I was gonna do my car, but it was real windy here.

    Another tip that I've been meaning to mention to you. I read somewhere how you can freeze smoothies as ice cubes. You can either prepare a whole batch with fruit that is close to spoiling or freeze any leftover smoothie. When you want a smoothie, just pull a few cubes from the freezer and place in a glass or bottle. HTH

    1. Hi Pubbler,

      Thanks for the tip on the raisins. I will be trying that.

      Windows will be next here but not until we can turn off the heat and the snow is gone for good.

      That is a wonderful tip on the smoothies. Thanks so much for all of your tips. I always learn a lot from you and my other readers.