Sunday, March 31, 2019

My Frugal Week

This past week I was able to work everyday, which is great for my budget. I didn't spend any money this week and I still have over half a tank of gas in my car for next week. 

Four of the five days I worked in the Home Ec department, which was so terrific. I had a kitchen at my disposal all week long. I loved being able to store my lunch and water in the refrigerator. 

There is a courtyard outside the window in this room and there was a red cardinal that came to the window each day. 

I saved money on gas this week by using both my Exxon gas rewards card and my EZ Pay card. I paid $2.04 per gallon using both cards. 

Dinner this week include Pizza Beans on Sunday, Tacos on Monday, Smoked Sausage, Corn, and Quinoa/Brown Rice on Tuesday. 

On Wednesday I made meatloaf and we ate that for two days. We must have been meatloaf hungry because my family requested it again on Friday & Saturday, so that's what we did. 

My daughter went to Kroger and IGA on Thursday and picked up three loaves of bread priced at 38¢ each. Sugar in the four pound bag for 99¢ (she picked up the limit of 5), and hot dogs and buns. 

We went to multiple yard sales on Saturday and then processed 100 clothing items today to list online this week. I also had another sale on eBay this week. 

How was your week?

~ Living within our Means ~

Sunday, March 24, 2019

My Frugal Week

Last week I was able to work two days while I will be working every day this next week. 

Days we stayed home this week include Sunday, Monday, and Wednesday. We didn't spend any money on those days. I love having days where we spend no money.

We didn't use any heat or air this week to keep warm or cool as the weather has been mild this week. That will help us save money on our electric bill next month. 

Payday was this week. Turns out my check was missing two days pay due to spring break. They'll be on my next check, but I was planning on putting new brake pads on my car this week. 

With the two day shortage I'll have to stretch my budget with less money than I originally budgeted for, so we will be on a bare bones budget until next month. I do not want to dip into my savings unless absolutely necessary. 

My brother-in-law, who is a mechanic, put new brake pads on my car front and back and didn't charge me any labor fees. The back brake pads weren't ready to be replaced, but he figured he would save us both time and money and go ahead replace them now rather than later. 

He also changed the oil for me and I'm so grateful as it was due for an oil change. That will be one thing I won't have to pay out of my budget next month. All I had to pay him was for the parts he used to do all of this, which turned out to be $100. 

I'll be having a front end alignment on the car next month. After that my car maintenance will be up to date and I won't have to incur any of those expenses while school is out and my income is lower for the summer months. 

Since we are on a bare bones budget this month I made a list of meals we could make here with what we have on hand. I also went to Food City to pick up a few things we needed. 

I picked up butter, mozzarella cheese, sour cream, popcorn, marked down Italian bread, chicken bouillon, and found some little smokies on markdown for $2.10 and picked up five on those. I spent $38.22 in total. 

Popcorn made the list because my supply is low. It's cheaper to make popcorn as a snack or for lunch with a sandwich verses buying potato chips to go with a sandwich. 

I went by Food Lion on Friday morning before I dropped my car off and picked up some lettuce, which was on sale for 89¢. I also picked up cheddar cheese, corn for 48¢ each, and two cans of cream of chicken soup for 48¢ each. I spent $9.32 in total.

After picking up my car on Saturday I needed to go to Food City to pick up a prescription. They accidently filled it for three months instead of one, so it cost me $23.85 for the 3 month supply. She asked me if I wanted to have her refill it for one month only, but I told her it was fine, and I've already absorbed it into my budget. 

I checked the marked down sections and picked up two mangos for 99¢ and the last marked down package of Little Smokies for $2.29. Total spent on food was $3.50.

One of the things I made this week was egg salad using those eggs from Kroger that we picked up last week for 88¢. Several egg salad sandwiches went into lunch boxes this week. 

Instead of saving the ends of bread I made sandwiches with them this week. Normally I save them in the freezer to make bread crumbs, but there's no waste either way. 

My daughter was wanting something sweet to eat this week, which is unusual for her. We are not dessert eaters here and I only make them during special occasions or holidays. 

Therefore it's rare for me to have any sweets around or even have something on the shelf to make. What I normally do when the sweet tooth gets me is make a piece of toast with jelly on it. 

I did have the peanut butter I bought on sale for 99¢ at Kroger a few months ago, so I decided on the three ingredients peanut butter (1 egg, 1 cup peanut butter, 1 cup sugar) cookies. 

Doing the math the ingredients cost me 83¢ and I made nine cookies, so each one was around 10¢, which is much cheaper than a cookie from the mall. 

I also had a couple of cake mixes on hand that we bought on mark down, so I made one of those as well. 

Other things we did to save money this week include:

Last week I started using a new app on my phone called Hiya. It's free and it blocks some of those annoying robocalls. 

Bailey went to see her first concert this week, The Black Jacket Symphony with Marc Martel performing Queen's, "A Night at the Opera" at the Tivoli theater in downtown Chattanooga. 

Her uncle (the same one who fixed my car) sprang for the tickets and took her to Red Lobster for dinner before the show. She had a great time and made many memories that night. 

Microsoft Rewards rewarded me with another $5 Amazon gift card this week. 

This week I had one ten dollar sale on eBay, which will definitely help the budget this month. 

We went to several yard sales on Saturday. One of them had a free section where we picked up this free Suntrust cup and two free umbrellas. 

One deal my daughter found was a large container of essential oils. Some of them had price tags of $24.99 on them, some were new and not opened and some were almost empty. There were two Ball canning jars inside along with several glass bottles with pump sprayers. 

There were some varieties that she'd been wanting for a while now, but didn't want to spend the money for, so this was a great deal for her, which she picked up for $25. We've already been diffusing rose in the house, which smells so good. 

So that's our week in a nutshell, financial issues cropped up, but were met because of good planning and budgeting. It's so important to be proactive and plan where your money is going before you get it and then the financial losses of life are easier to absorb. 

I hope you have a great week!

~ Living within our Means ~

Friday, March 15, 2019

My Frugal Week

Welcome to Friday! We've had a good frugal week and it was great to be on spring break and get several things done around the house. 

Added to our Frugal Pantry this week:

Last Friday my daughter stopped in at Kroger and bought four dozen eggs since they were on sale for 88¢. 

She also stopped in at Ingle's to see if they had any meat markdowns. She hit the jackpot there. 

She found Laura Lynn orange juice for 99¢. We bought six of those since they were such a good price. 

She also found ground beef marked down. The prices were all different, but the most inexpensive one worked out to $1.81 per pound. We ended up with close to twenty pounds all tucked away in our freezer now. 

On Saturday we stopped in at Earth Fair to pick up some honey since we were out. I pick up one quart of honey, organic lemons, Numi three root turmeric tea, Numi gunpowder green tea, and one lemon plum to try. 

On Thursday we stopped in at Ingle's & Kroger and ended up with more meat for the freezer and a couple of pizzas, which were marked down . 

We also picked up three loaves of bread for 38¢ each. 

We also stopped in at Aldi to pick up five bags of the onions that are on sale this week for 99¢ per three pound bag. 

Dinners This Week:

Saturday: Chicken & Dressing, Carrots, 
Sunday: Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, Corn, Biscuits
Monday: Cheesy Potatoes, Broccoli
Tuesday: Chicken Tenders, Baked Potatoes, Broccoli
Wednesday: Ham, Scalloped Potatoes, Green Peas
Thursday: Loose Meat Sandwiches, Salad
Stayed Home/No Spend Days:

Monday & Wednesday - No Money Spent

What I Worked on This Week:

This cat cot sells for brand new on Amazon for $22.38, but we found one at a yard sale last summer and only paid $1.00 for it. 

The cats have loved it and actually wore a hole in the middle of the mesh, so they stopped using it.

I wanted them to have one that is useful, but I didn't want to buy a new one since we only paid $1.00 for this one. 

On Wednesday I had the time to patch the hole they had created. Using part of an old towel and some fishing line, I sewed a patch onto the cot from underneath. I sewed two different circles around the patch hoping it will last for a while.

I'm happy to report that the cot is now back in service with our cats. 

Other things I've worked on this week include:

- Processing Inventory
- Cross Posting Inventory 
- Laundry - Hung some up to dry on the free drying rack we picked up last summer. 

Unexpected Expenses This Week:

On Saturday the tire pressure monitoring system on my car indicated that on of my tires needed additional air pressure. Since we live in a rural area, air compressors are few and far between here, and the one I did find was out of order. 

Sunday morning I woke up early and went to Walmart's automotive center because they are the only automotive service open on Sunday here. 

To make a long story short I ended up buying a new tire. Thankfully, even though I am between paychecks I just happened to have the money without dipping into my savings account. 

Saved, Reused, & Repurposed:

I emptied the remains of two jars of cherry preserves, but washed and saved the jars to be used later. 

Freebies This Week:

This week I received a free six month supply of medicine for my blood sugar. My doctor filled out the forms for me to receive it for free. 

Although this freebie is now expired it was a very nice freebie. A regular size pouch of the Seeds of Change Quinoa and Brown Rice with garlic.  

Other Frugal Activities:

We don't use baggies very often for our sandwiches, but use reusable containers instead when we need a lunch packed for outside the home. Same with our reusable water bottles. 

~ Living within our Means ~

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Wednesday Weekly Grocery Store Sale Items

Today is Wednesday, the day that the grocery store weekly sale ads come out in this area. 

Listed below are the grocery stores where I can shop and the items they have on sale this week that I would consider buying. 

They also have many more items on sale and if you're interested in looking at the ads, simply click on the title of the store and it will take you straight to the weekly ad. 

There are other stores I shop at, but if they didn't have anything I wanted to buy this week, I did not include them. 

If you're interested in a complete list of stores where I can shop please read this blog post. 

Grocery Stores in SE Tennessee

On to this week's sale items...

Cabbage 39¢ per pound
3 pound bag of onions 99¢

IGA Canned Tomatoes (14.5 oz) 2 for $1.00

Food City
Pick 5 Meat $14.99 Friday Only
Pick 5 Produce $5.00 Friday Only
Pick 5 Frozen Foods $9.99 Friday Only
Swaggerty's Sausage $2.49

Fresh & Low
20 pound bag potatoes $4.65
Green Cabbage 39¢ per pound

Food Lion
Green Cabbage 29¢ per pound (Best Price)
Banquet Pot Pies 2 for $1.00
Tyson Chicken - B1G1F ($3.00 each)
Limes 3 for $1.00

Club Crackers 99¢ (Digital Coupon 5X)
Kroger Sour Cream or Cottage Cheese (2 oz) $1.49 (DC)
Kroger Cheddar Cheese (16 oz) $2.49 (DC)

V8 Juice B1G1F
Luzianne Tea Bags B1G1F

Piggly Wiggly
Boneless Chicken Breast $1.59 pound
Always Save Tea Bags - 100 count - $1.25
Always Save Saltine Crackers 79¢
Buy 8 Save $8  
Oscar Mayer Bologna, Hot Dogs, Smoked Sausage 99¢

Save A Lot
Green Grapes 99¢ per pound

That's my list for this week. If I or my daughter are in the area we may stop in and buy these items or not. We like to remain flexible on these items. 

Any good deals in your area this week?

~ Living within our Means ~

Friday, March 8, 2019

Frugal Friday March 8, 2019

Welcome to Friday! I'm happy because I am feeling better and at three o'clock today we will be on Spring Break for a week. 

Days Worked:

This week I worked all five days, so I'm definitely happy it's Friday. I'm looking forward to having the next week off. 

The weather turned off cold on Sunday evening and I had to bring out my big winter coat. It was 27 degrees in the morning. We had to salt the stairs as they were iced over from all the rain. 

My daughter went sourcing yesterday and ended up at Ingle's where she found two great deals. 

The first one was two of these corned beef roasts. They were originally over $12, but on mark down they were $5.99, so she bought two of them and I already have them in the freezer. 

The second great deal she found was on corn tortillas. This was not in the sale flyer, but was an in-store special. These corn tortillas were only 50¢ each! 

These make other foods in your home stretch to make great meals. We use them on a regular basis. We bought twenty of them as they freeze well and we'll use them to make great frugal meals. 

She also found two pizzas on markdown at Kroger priced at $2.99 and $3.49. She made them for dinner on Thursday and we had plenty leftover for lunches today.

She was so sweet, she even packed my lunch for me today. 

Dinners This Week:

Saturday: Homemade Pizza, Salad
Sunday: Tacos with lettuce, cheese, tomato, and onion
Monday:  Taco Salad
Tuesday: Chicken & Dressing, Mixed Vegetables
Wednesday: Homemade Chili
Thursday: Pizza
Friday: Chicken & Dressing as we still have some left. 
Other Stuff:

Our garbage man quit in February, but I was already able to hire someone new to take his place. I advertised on my Facebook page (which was free) and had someone new in about five minutes. 

Since I work as a sub and know the majority of students at the high school many of them are willing to do this small job for what we're paying. 

I've been playing Scrabble online for free this week. It really helps to keep my brain active, which is good for the aging process and it's also fun to try and come up with the best words. 

That's all the news I have from here this week. Thank you all so much for your concern with me being sick. It meant a lot to me. I hope you have a great weekend. 

~ Living within our Means ~

Monday, March 4, 2019

Frugal Workshop Update

The week of February 18th we had a lot of rain, so much so that school was closed Thursday & Friday due to flooding. I still managed to work two days that week and four days last week. 

Last Thursday I ended up at the doctor's office because I am still sick. She prescribed an antibiotic for me, so hopefully I will start to feel better. I've not felt like updating the blog for this reason. 

I'm scheduled to work everyday this week and then we'll be on Spring Break. 

On Saturday my daughter woke up and went to a yard sale. She found towels for $1.00 and new washcloths for 50¢. The washcloths are new from JCPenney and originally sold for $6.00. 

The people running the yard sale are moving to Asia and were trying to unload a lot of stuff. 

I'm all ready for the work week. I stopped on Saturday to pick up some grocery items for lunches this week. I have all my clothes washed and ready for the week. Hopefully this will be a smooth running week without too much excitement. 

We are running on a two hour delay this morning due to all the rain yesterday and drop in temperature causing black ice this morning. 

I hope everyone has a good week. :)

~ Living within our Means ~
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