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Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Being Frugal and a Few Other Things

Frugal Living

We were pretty frugal people, but since our babies flew the nest, and it is just Dave and I we became less disciplined about our spending. I stopped making laundry soap and started to buy laundry detergent and fabric softener every few weeks, I purchased a lot of convenience snacks for the grand children, I started buying bread, and just became lazy about the garden. Well after a while I got tired of spending money on laundry detergent, it is expensive even when buying the bargain brand, and it always seems that more needs to be purchased. So, I went back to making laundry soap, I spent $6 and have enough ingredients to make detergent for a year!  And, a batch of homemade laundry soap lasts almost a month for us, I can live with spending fifty cents a month for laundry soap and taking fifteen minutes once a month to make it.
I don't even know why we sort of stopped making bread, I guess convenience, and when I have seven grand children here for lunch we go through a lot of bread, and they love toast for a snack. But the cheap white bread from the store is pretty dreadful, nothing at all like homemade. So, I am back to baking all of our bread, ten loaves every two weeks doesn't take much time, and I can make it for so much less than a cheap loaf of store bought. And once a month I bake a large batch of cookies, bag them up and pop them into the freezer and dole them out to grandchildren as needed, much less expensive than buying a bunch of overpriced snacks and having tons of packaging to throw away.
Hanging laundry out to dry, why not, I just got lazy, and with only two of us we really don't do many loads a week so I got into the habit of using the dryer again.
Going to the store WAY too frequently, my goal now is to grocery shop twice a month, rather than average two trips per week to the store. The last time I purchased groceries was October 28, I will need to go this weekend as we are running quite low on supplies.
Gardening, last summer I did not have time, this summer I had more time but the garden was not a priority. Today I went out and gleaned the last of the produce, I have several nice green peppers, a few dozen beets, a few heads of broccoli, and the chickens have a lot of greens to enjoy.
Not quite Old Mother Hubbard's cupboard, but the emptiest the pantry has been in years!
I am good at finding deals at the store, and I will only buy meat/poultry that is reduced for quick sale, BUT only if it is something we will actually eat.  On Monday I roasted a whole chicken, it was just shy of six pounds and I purchased it on mark down for $4.31. The roasted chicken, along with some mashed potato, stuffing, corn, and gravy, fed 7 children, and three adults on Monday evening, the left overs Dave ate for dinner on Tuesday. I boiled the chicken remains and made two quarts of broth. The broth will be lovely for making gravy for future meals, or a base for soup, etc. etc. The total cost of the meal prepared was around $8.50, which is a very good deal for all of the people it fed.

Latest Project

In my last post I mentioned deciding what to do for my next project. I have decided to knit up bunch of yarn that is taking up space in my sewing room. I am knitting blocks and will sew them together to make a cozy throw blanket.

Latest Read

I am reading a book by Neil Gaiman, Anansi Boys, so far so good. Earlier this year I read another Neil Gaiman book for book club, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, it was excellent, I highly recommend it. Neil Gaiman books are a bit other worldly, magical, yet set in a real enough world to make you believe, I like that it is so easy to disappear into the story, pure escapism.

Well I think that is all for now. We are still enjoying a most beautiful November. I put all of the garden furniture away today, and brought in my geraniums for the winter. Now downstairs for lunch, a soft boiled egg and toast soldiers, and a nice mug of tea and then out for brisk walk.

Blessings to you,



Living on Less Money Blog said...

It's so easy to slip into new habits that are less frugal. I find myself doing the same thing. It sounds like you are on a good path now. :-)

Pen Wilcock said...

You are an inspiration - and that knitting is s clever! xx