Thursday, January 3, 2019

Maintaining What You Already Own & Doing Without new Gadgets

This week I fixed the loose toilet seat in our bathroom. I knew that if I did not get it tightened that it would probably break and cause me to have to buy a new one. 

To start with I tried to fix it with a pair of pliers while leaning over the seat, but was unable to tighten it sufficiently. 

What I ended up doing was getting in the floor to really tighten it well and scrubbed the commode and floor while I was down there. 

What's funny is that now they offer toilet seat tightener kits. I saved money by doing it myself versus buying a $11.99 Ginsey toilet seat tightener kit from Walmart. 

Another thing we did this week in the bathroom was to hot glue the upper portion of our shower door to keep it from falling down. I'm not sure if it's missing a piece or what, but it won't be falling down again anytime soon. 

Maintaining what you own will definitely save you money over the years rather than buying new when something breaks down. 

When was the last time you vacuumed your refrigerator coils? That job will definitely extend the life of your refrigerator. 

This week I saw a new kitchen gadget for straining grease, which is called the Easy Greasy Strainer. 

Image Credit

This item sells for $19.95 at Bed, Bath, & Beyond. I have my own system for straining grease from ground beef and includes my own strainer and a glass measuring cup. 

I set my strainer on top of the measuring cup and let the grease drain into the measuring cup below. Then I place the grease into a jar, let in cool, and place it in the garbage can. 

Now my grease removal system might not be fancy, but it works for me. And I have no need to spend $19.95 on a gadget when I already have the tools at home to handle the job. 

~ Living within our Means ~


Cheryl Kimbley said...

Love this post! So true. All the new gadgets that are out there are simply money grabbers. I drain grease the exact same way!
It seems like every day there is some simple fix done around the house to prevent things from getting worse and costing money.
Great reminder!

Susie Cute said...

Thank you for another no-nonsence post about what "used to be" common sense to average folks! These gifts you give us create many "AHA moments" and help stimulate our brains which have been fed a daily diet of simply unnecessary ads from the advertisers! You are SUCH a blessing to so many.


Carol in NC said...

I love your common sense approach to household management and budgeting. What my grandmother would have called "gumption" seems to be in short supply these days, based on the gadgets available for purchase. Looking forward to another year of saving and thriving alongside you in 2019. All the best!

Belinda said...

Great minds think alike, Cheryl. I love that you drain grease the same way. Thank you. :)

Belinda said...

Thank you so much, Pam. That means a lot to me. You're so sweet. :)

Belinda said...

Thank you, Carol. I'm looking forward to another year of saving and thriving along with you too, Carol. I hope you thrive and prosper in the new year. :)

slugmama said...

Like Alton Brown used to say, I prefer a multi-tasker tool to a "one trick pony" tool in my kitchen. All those specialized tools you can buy will take over the space in your kitchen along with all your money! lolz

Anne in the kitchen said...

I had no idea there was even such a thing as a toilet seat tightening kit. All this time I thought a pair of pliers and a screwdriver was all you needed for the job. Silly me!
I am not a big fan of one use gizmos usually, but I did break down and buy a veggie spiralizer since I am eating no pasta.

Ellie said...

Thanks for the great post. I learned a better way to strain grease! I have been using an empty can and tipping the grease out of the pan while holding a flat strainer. I always seen to have a hard time keeping the meat in the pan. I will be using your method from now on.

thyme2Bthrifty said...

Perhaps you need a column: Ask Belinda, somewhat like Ann Landers' column but "how to." :) You almost always have an answer to a problem.

Belinda said...

So, so true, Sluggy. They take up so much more space that we would run out of room if we bought them all. LOL

Belinda said...

I know, right, Anne? I didn't know there was a tool for tightening toilet seats until I Googled the topic about tightening the seat. LOL

I do have one of those spiralizers too, but I rcvd it as a Christmas present a few years ago. It's pretty cool.

And I have to admit that I do love kitchen tools. They are my guilty pleasure, although I normally buy them at yard sales for a fraction of the cost of new. LOL

Belinda said...

Oh, I'm so glad you liked the idea, Ellie. I've used one of those flat strainers for potatoes, so I know what you're talking about. Glad to help. :)

Belinda said...'re so sweet, Anna. We could write it together! Hee Hee :)

Hawaii Planner said...

I like your grease idea. I will definitely try that. Right now, we use a paper towel to absorb the grease, but that's pretty wasteful. Thanks for the suggestion!

Belinda said...

You are very welcome!

Out My window said...

It cracks me up all the things they think we need to make our lives easier and then we have to store them and find them. What did the pioneers do?

Belinda said...

Exactly Kim! LOL Pioneers probably saved it and made soap or something else genuisly.

Nil @ The Little House by the Lake said...

There are so many gadgets for every little thing! I wonder if people really buy them. Not only these cost money, you also need space to store them.
You are so smart to use what you have.
Your post reminded me that it's time to clean the fridge coils again. Thanks Belinda. :)

thyme2Bthrifty said...

Candles and oil for lamps.

Belinda said...

You're welcome, Nil. So any of those gadgets are made cheaply too and don't last very long, which is another reason to avoid them at all costs.

Belinda said...

Great idea, Anna.

56steps said...

Haha - I laughed when you said while you were down there you cleaned around the toilet. :)

Seriously though, this post is so true. I see things all the time for sale and think, "really?" There's something for sale that does ______fill in the blank.
Additionally when I have a job around the house I often challenge myself to figure out a way to fix whatever it is without running to the store and buying the easy fix.


Belinda said...

THat's the way my Dad always did things, Debra. Whatever was broken he could find something around the house to fix it. It's a great way to save money. :)

† Peaceful Catholic 02† said...

I drain my grease the same way you do.. I also drain bacon grease and keep in a separate jar to add to beans :-)

Only 4 gadgets I have are
Basic Blender
Instant Pot
Basic Hand electric mixer

Belinda said...

That's great, Renee. I like a minimalist style as everything looks so neat and tidy. :)

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